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LOS ANGELES —The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) and Westfield Group have entered into a joint venture in which CPPIB will invest $1.8 billion in 10 regional malls and two redevelopment sites in the United States. The transaction is slated to close during the first quarter of this year.

Westfield currently owns and manages the properties, which have a total gross value of $4.8 billion. CPPIB’s investment represents a 45 percent interest in the joint venture. Upon completion of the transaction, CPPIB will be one of the largest institutional owners of regional shopping centers in the U.S., with interests in a total of 26 assets.

“This is an excellent opportunity to acquire a significant interest in a portfolio compromising high-quality regional shopping centers that are well positioned for long-term growth,” said Graeme Eadie, senior vice president of real estate investments for CPPIB, in a prepared statement.

“This acquisition represents our largest real estate investment to date globally and supports our retail real estate strategy of investing in dominant regional malls with best-in-class operators. We are pleased to partner once again with Westfield, a longstanding partner with deep expertise in the U.S. and global retail sector.”

The shopping centers in the transaction include:

* The 1.46 million-square-foot Westfield Annapolis in Annapolis, Md.

* The 1.06 million-square-foot Westfield Culver City in Culver City, Calif.

* The 758,410-square-foot Westfield Horton Plaza in San Diego

* The 1.57 million-square-foot Westfield Mission Valley in San Diego

* The 1.25 million-square-foot Westfield North County in Escondido, Calif.

* The 1.14 million-square-foot Westfield Oakridge in San Jose, Calif.

* The 1.03 million-square-foot Westfield Plaza Bonita in National City, Calif.

* The 1.31 million-square-foot Westfield Santa Anita in Arcadia, Calif.

* The 1.68 million-square-foot Westfield Southcenter in Tukwila, Wash.

* The 613,530-square-foot West Valley/Westfield Promenade in Woodland Hills, Calif.

Combined, the properties total 13.5 million square feet and are 93.4 percent leased on average. Westfield Group will remain the property manager, leasing agent and developer for the properties.

“This new agreement continues the group’s strategy of creating value through the introduction of joint-venture partners into our assets globally,” said Peter Lowy, co-CEO of Westfield Group, in a prepared statement. “We are pleased to further expand our long-term relationship with CPPIB through this U.S. joint venture.”

— Savannah Duncan

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