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Spotlight on REITs: Western Investment Real Estate Trust

Money Manager | Monday, February 14th, 2011

Western Investment Real Estate Trust: This real estate investment trust had specialized in retail centers and shopping malls, mostly focusing on grocery stores and chains. In 1999 Western Investment Real Estate Trust changed its legal operating name to Western properties trust, feeling as if this name was better suited to decide the way the company was run. The company was first founded in 1962 in San Francisco California.

Former Chairman Brad Blake was the CEO of the company from 1998 until it was dissolved in 2000; he was responsible for acquiring 55 properties that totalled 5.5 million square feet. Brad Blake is now the Co Founder of Blake Hunt Ventures, a real estate investment company in California.

In 2000, Western Properties Trust was bought by Pan Pacific Retail properties for a total of $440 million dollars, in a share to share buyout transaction. Most of Western Properties Trust’s properties were leased out to major chains and grocers with a high occupancy rate (99%) making the buy a good and stable one for Pan Pacific Retail, This buy would make Pan Pacific one of the biggest real estate investment trust companies in California, with over $1.3 billion dollars worth of assets in the year 2000.

In 2006 Pan Pacific Retail sold to KIMCO retail for $2.9 billion dollars, this was done by paying $60 cash per Pan Pacific share and $10 in KIMCO stocks per every share owned. Totaling $ 70 per Pan Pacific share. KIMCO then acquired all of Western Properties Trust former properties and buildings, as well as Pan Pacific’s buildings, properties and net worth.

KIMCO realty is traded on the New York Stock Exchange, and a share in the company is currently trading at $18.07 as of Jan 7th/2011. KIMCO is a huge retail and commercial owner and is the largest retail investor in the USA today, leasing space out to almost all major grocers and chain stores, such as Target. KIMCO has rapidly expanded and is now a global company with offices and properties in many different countries around the world.

Western Properties Trust started as a real estate investing company that would buy and lease commercial and retail properties, as it grew the company knew that its only option was to sell and make a profit or to expand further, Seeing that the REIT market was falling and the marketplace had many options when it came to retail real estate trusts, Western Properties Trust decided to sell and make a profit, which was the best choice for the company at the time, as of today all assets formerly owned by Western Properties Trust belong to the KIMCO portfolio, which is expanding on a daily basis.

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