CBL & Associates Properties, Inc. (NYSE: CBL) today announced progress on its mall disposition program. CBL closed on the sale of a 75% interest in River Ridge in Lynchburg, VA, to Liberty University. CBL received net cash proceeds of $33.5 million for the interest in River Ridge. CBL retains a 25% ownership position in the asset and is responsible for leasing and management, earning customary fees.
“We are pleased to announce further progress on our mall disposition program with the sale of a majority interest in River Ridge and to enter into a new partnership with Liberty University, an institution that recognizes the excellent value of the property,” said Stephen Lebovitz, CBL’s President & CEO. “The sale marks another milestone achievement in our portfolio transformation strategy. We look forward to continuing this progress throughout the year.”
Lebovitz added, “The new partnership between CBL and Liberty University has a strong vision for the future of River Ridge. The former Sears location provides a great opportunity to elevate the entire center through redevelopment of underutilized space, bringing new in-demand retail, entertainment and restaurants to the market. We look forward to making an announcement when plans have been finalized.”
“River Ridge represents part of an intentional diversification of Liberty University’s investment portfolio. Liberty’s commercial real estate holdings have performed well in recent years,” said Liberty University President, Jerry Falwell. “Liberty University has an economic impact on the Lynchburg region of more than $1 billion annually and is committed to the success and economic vitality of the region. The university is pleased to help implement CBL’s exciting vision for the mall and to assist in bringing new and improved services to the region.”
(CBL & Associates owns Northpark Mall in Joplin.)