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SANTA MONICA, CA- After a major number of new center openings in 2007, the Macerich Co. will focus predominantly on expansions, executives said at its fourth-quarter conference call. Last year, the company opened the first phases of SanTan Village in Gilbert, AZ, and the Promenade at Casa Grande, AZ. This year will see additional phases in both projects, said Arthur Coppola, president and CEO.

“One reason for doing open-air projects is that it allows you to open over period of time,” Coppola said. The company also added lifestyle components to Flagstaff (AZ) Mall and Freehold (NJ) Raceway Mall, which will continue to expand this year.

Also underway are expansions and/or renovations of the Oaks in Thousand Oaks, CA, and Scottsdale (AZ) Fashion Square; and the complete overhaul of Santa Monica Place, which was closed in the past two weeks. Some new development also is taking place, including the first phase of the Marketplace at Estrella Falls, in Goodyear, AZ. The move dovetails well with what Coppola said will be a soft 2008, based on tenant predictions, “and we’re ready for a soft year.”

For the year, total funds from operations (“FFO”)-diluted were $407.9 million, compared with $383.1 million in 2006. Net income available to common stockholders was $71.7 million compared to $228.0 million in 2006. Mall tenant annual sales per square foot for the year ended increased 4.4% to $472. Portfolio occupancy at Dec. 31, 2007 was 93.5% compared to 93.6% at year-end 2006.

For the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2007, FFO-diluted was $132.5 million, up 7% from the fourth quarter of 2006. Net income was $38.4 million, compared with $147.9 million in the same quarter the previous year. Included in net income during the quarter ended Dec. 31, 2006 was $132.7 million in gain on sale of assets. Macerich owns approximately 76 million sf of gross leasable area, consisting primarily of interests in 72 regional malls.

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