From low occupancy rates and low rents to 99% occupied, and net operating income growth by more than 50% 2 ½ years after purchase.
For years, Euclid Plaza, a 132,000 square foot retail shopping center in Anaheim, California, had been plagued with lower occupancy rates hard to lease vacancies and lower rents. Despite its proximity to the Interstate 5 freeway, a newly revitalized power center across the street, with Wal-Mart, Ross, and Old Navy as major tenants, and the heavy traffic flow along Euclid Avenue, the center struggled to attract shoppers and to keep its space filled.
In 2001, the Plaza was 75% occupied claiming 99 Ranch Market and Yoshinoya as the only credit tenants in the center. Milan purchased the property in August 2001 and went to work.
The facade was remodeled to give the buildings better articulation and brighter colors, helping to compensate for the center's orientation to the street. Overly deep spaces were consolidated to create large sub anchor spaces and spaces with less depth were subdivided to create high-value spaces along the highly trafficked Euclid Avenue. The landscaping was completely renovated, removing overgrown foliage and replacing it with a plant palette of palms and lacier trees to better showcase tenant signage.
Through Milan’s aggressive leasing efforts, the center was re-tenanted with national tenants such as Quiznos, Starbucks, American General Finance, UPS Stores, H&R Block, the United States Government for an armed forces recruiting center, and One Dollar City (a local discount retailer with multiple locations in Southern California.) A variety of other tenants were also signed to the center boosting the image and occupancy that generated significant buzz in the retail trade area.
Less than 2 ½ years after the purchase, the property was 99% occupied, and net operating income had grown by more than 50%. Capitalizing on the increase in cash flow from the property, as well as the market’s overall upward movement, Milan sold the center in 2004. Investors partnering with Milan during the 2 ½ year hold period quadrupled their equity and enjoyed cash flow throughout the hold period.