NEW YORK — Simon Property Group Inc. said Friday it intends to appeal a federal district court order in Minnesota that requires it to sell its 27.5 percent stake in the Mall of America to Triple Five of Minnesota Inc. for $81.4 million.
Triple Five had challenged a 1999 restructuring arrangement involving the mall’s partnerships, claiming that it was denied the opportunity to participate in one of the transactions. Triple Five, the originator of the idea of the 2.8 million- square-foot mall, in 1986 secured the development rights for the land on which the mall is situated. The Teachers Insurance & Annuity Association sold its 27.5 percent interest in the mall to Simon Property Group LP, and it was this transaction that Triple Five contested.
Triple Five is owned by four brothers: Raphael, Nader, Bahman and Eskander Ghermezian.
Simon Property Group LP’s operating general partner is Simon Property Group Inc., the publicly traded real estate investment trust. Both the LP and the REIT are named defendants in the case.
On Wednesday, the Minnesota district court ruled that not only should Simon sell its stake to Triple Five, but that it also should give up net profits received from 1999 to the present.
For the breaches of fiduciary duty, the court ordered that all the defendants reimburse Triple Five for its reasonable attorney’s fees and costs of litigation.
Some of the other defendants named in the case include Si-Minn Limited Partnership and Melvin Simon & Associates.
The court ordered that Si-Minn be replaced as managing general partner of Mall of America Associates, another defendant.
Simon said in a statement Friday that entities other than Simon Property Group had violated the fiduciary duties owed to Triple Five. A day earlier, Simon in a statement took issue with the court’s remedy of requiring it to sell its stake to Triple Five and described the court’s order as “legally and factually wrong.” The Mall is Simon’s biggest single asset.