Florida firm pays $30M for River Grove shopping center

Investors stay hungry for grocery-anchored shopping centers

East Coast Acquisitions' Elliot Sasson and Thatcher Woods Center (LinkedIn, Google Maps)
East Coast Acquisitions' Elliot Sasson and Thatcher Woods Center (LinkedIn, Google Maps)

A suburban Chicago shopping center traded hands for $30.5 million, marking a Florida firm’s first acquisition in the Midwest and suggesting demand hasn’t cooled for grocery-centered malls.

Tampa’s East Coast Acquisitions picked up the Thatcher Woods Center in River Grove this month from Northbrook retail real estate investment firm Pine Tree, Cook County records show.
It’s the 19th addition to East Coast’s 2 million square foot portfolio, most of which is in southern states including Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas.

East Coast’s focus is on retail centers in strong secondary markets that have grocery stores as like the Rich’s Fresh Market at Thatcher Woods as major tenants. “Necessity-, service-driven retail is what stands the test of time in a rapidly changing retail marketplace,” the company says on its website.

Mid-America Real Estate Corporation represented the seller of the 193,000-square-foot property.

Investors have been hungry for such assets, even after trading volume for the asset class hit a record last year.

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Allied Development recently paid PGIM $30.2 million for the Marshfield Plaza shopping strip, a 259,000-square-foot property on the city’s South Side along Interstate 57.

Brian Kosoy’s Sterling Organization sold the 146,000-square-foot Hoffman Plaza in suburban Chicago to Jay Kaiser’s AmCap for $30 million, and New York investment firm Brixmor Property Group picked up the Chicago-area Elmhurst Crossing and North Riverside Plaza shopping centers from Montreal-based Federal Construction in the spring.

Grocery-anchored shopping centers made up more than a third of retail transaction volumes nationwide in the first quarter of 2022, according to JLL. In 2021, trades of grocery-anchored assets hit a record high of 735, up 13 from the previous record set in 2014. Companies spent more than $13.3 billion on the properties, the largest share of any retail property type and the second-most in recorded history.

As shopping center prices have increased, profit margins and cap rates, a measure of the rental income a property generates compared with its purchase price, have dropped.

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Seller PGIM’s CEO Eric Adler and 11730 South Marshfield Avenue (PGIM, Getty Images)
Allied plunks down $30M for South Side shopping center
AmCap CEO Jay Kaiser and Sterling Organization CEO Brian Kosoy (AmCap, Sterling Organization, Getty)
AmCap buys suburban Chicago shopping center for $30M