MOUNT LAUREL, NJ–The $19 million sale of Town Square Shopping Center, an 88,380-square-foot grocery-anchored property in Mount Laurel was arranged by Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services after lively bidding.
Brad Nathanson, senior director of M&M’s national retail group in Philadelphia, represented the seller, a New Jersey-based private developer, and also the buyer, a privately held, 50-year-old real estate firm based in New Jersey. Nathanson said both companies insisted on confidentiality.
Town Square Shopping Center is anchored by a 64,255-square foot prime ShopRite supermarket with more than 10 years remaining on an initial 25-year lease. “The strength of the anchor tenant, coupled with the superior demographics of Mount Laurel, helped us achieve more than 12 competitive offers,” Nathanson tells GlobeSt.com. “The offers came from sources ranging from private operators to pension funds.”
The sales price equates to $215 per square foot, notes Nathanson.
Town Square was developed in conjunction with a master-planned 55-plus residential community in 1996, in order to provide necessity-based retail to more than 3,200 residents of four nearby developments. It was built on 13.1 acres at the corner of Union Mill Road and Elbo Lane in the affluent community, just 16 miles east of Philadelphia. Nathanson notes that there is limited other retail in the immediate area, and the township is strongly resistant to further development.
ShopRite, the dominant supermarket operator in New Jersey, occupies 73% of the space at the center. The supermarket’s lease is guaranteed by Ahold USA Inc., a Standard & Poor’s-rated BBB+ company. Ahold’s guaranty helped to spark the high level of interest in the listing from both private and institutional buyers, Nathanson said.
“The end pricing for the shopping center matched pre-2007 levels, the like of which hasn’t been seen in the Philadelphia marketplace in the last five years,” the broker says. “The lack of institutional-quality inventory, available and attractive financing in the 3.75% to 4.5% range offered by life insurance companies, also were contributing factors to the sales price,” adds Nathanson.