Sears Holdings and California-based shopping mall operator The Macerich formed a joint venture as part of Sears Holdings.Sears contributed nine properties where Sears currently operates stores located at Macerich malls to the joint venture, including property with space leased to third parties. Sears Holdings will lease back from the joint venture and continue to operate existing Sears Holdings stores at the properties contributed to the joint venture. Macerich contributed $150 million in cash to the joint venture, which has been distributed to Sears. The lease arrangements between Sears Holdings and the joint venture provide the joint venture with the ability to create additional value through recapturing certain space leased to Sears Holdings in the contributed properties and re-leasing that space to third-party tenants.
Arthur Coppola, Chairman and CEO of Macerich, stated, "This new joint venture with Sears Holdings is in line with our overall strategy of reinvesting capital into our portfolio of proven, highly profitable locations. The nine properties being contributed to the joint venture are located at centers with average in-line sales of $680 per square foot and include some of our top centers including Washington Square, Los Cerritos Center, Arrowhead Towne Center, Vintage Faire Mall, Danbury Fair Mall, Chandler Fashion Center, Freehold Raceway, Deptford Mall and South Plains Mall. Through ongoing space optimization, we expect this transaction to create significant value for shoppers, tenants and shareholders alike."