LAS VEGAS — With 44,000 attendees at this year’s International Council of Shopping Centers spring conference Monday, there were plenty of deals in the works. A few highlights:
- Vornado is believed to have made a bid on Lord & Taylor, but “all of these big developers are bidding on that portfolio,” said an investment banker. As reported, Lord & Taylor sent out 40 memorandums, or fact sheets, detailing the operation to prospective bidders.
Opinions on Lord & Taylor’s future vary. John Bucksbaum, chief executive officer of General Growth Properties Inc., warned that what happens with the portfolio will “depend on whose hands it’s in.” William Susman, chief operating officer of investment bank Financo Inc., thinks the brand needs a serious overhaul before it becomes a major player in the market.
Meanwhile, developers such as Peter Lowy, managing director of Westfield Group, are eager to buy back Lord & Taylor stores and either raze or revamp them into new lifestyle components and bring in new retailers.
- H&M’s smaller prototypes are being rolled out to more stores in Las Vegas and Southern California as the retailer continues to expand into new formats, including malls.
- The Taubman Co.’s protracted development deal in Salt Lake City with the Church of Latter Day Saints might finally see the light of day. Bill Taubman, president of Taubman Centers, said news of the proceedings of the urban mixed-use project, which will reshape all of Salt Lake City, will be released within the next six months after several years of negotiations. Taubman said it is one of the most complex deals the developer has worked on.
- The Westfield Group’s Lowy will head to New York in the next several weeks to begin negotiations with the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey on the retail space at the World Trade Center. The Westfield Group, according to a deal in place before the Twin Towers were destroyed, retains the first right of refusal on any retail development at the trade center.
- Forever 21’s new store in Pasadena, Calif., which occupies a former Saks Fifth Avenue space, is said to be the first of the retailer’s department store concept and will house items such as shoes, accessories, and men’s and children’s fashions, as well as a restaurant.