NEW YORK — Simon Property Group Inc. reported a 0.4 percent gain in net income on a 26.7 percent increase in funds from operations (FFO) in its third quarter, thanks to project launches and a productive portfolio.

“We are pleased to report another quarter of strong financial and operational results,” said David Simon, chief executive officer, in a statement. “Our growth in FFO can be attributed to the productivity of our high-quality portfolio, the 2004 acquisition of Chelsea Property Group and the completion and opening of several new development projects. During the first 10 months of 2005, we opened two open-air regional shopping centers, one community center and two Premium Outlet centers — one in the U.S. and one in Japan.”

Simon went on to say that the company”s “development pipeline continues to be robust with five additional projects comprising nearly 3 million square feet of gross leasable area under construction and projected to open over the next 12 to 18 months.”

The real estate investment trust”s net income available to common stockholders came in at $74.4 million, which compares to $74.1 million last year. Diluted funds from operations in the quarter rose to $351.9 million from $277.7 million in the same period last year.

Regarding occupancy, the firm said its regional malls saw an 80 basis point gain to 92.6 percent from 91.8 percent last year. Premium outlet centers experienced a 50 basis point rise to 99.6 percent occupancy from 99.1 percent last year. The occupancy rate at the company”s community lifestyle centers fell 90 basis points to 91.3 percent from 92.2 percent.

Comparable sales per square foot and average rent per square foot in each portfolio segment experienced gains during the quarter.

This story first appeared in the October 28, 2005 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.

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