The World's Largest Resource for the Cart, Kiosk, and Temporary Retail Industry
by Nichola Saminather

Westfield Retail Trust, the Australia and New Zealand mall owner being carved out of Westfield Group, raised A$2 billion ($1.98 billion) in a share offer, 43 percent below the total it had sought.

Investors paid a fixed A$2.75 a share, the company said in a statement to the stock exchange, with demand exceeding the underwritten portion of the sale by A$250 million. The company had sought to raise as much as A$3.5 billion from selling shares in the new trust, which will own 50 percent stakes in Westfield Group’s 54 Australian and New Zealand shopping centers.

“There doesn’t seem to be much excitement in the Westfield Retail Trust deal,” said John White, who helps oversee $3 billion as Melbourne-based managing director for Asia-Pacific public real estate securities at property management firm Heitman. “The valuation is not that compelling.”

The new trust, announced on Nov. 3, partially reverses a merger of Westfield’s three businesses six years ago that created the world’s biggest shopping mall operator. The Sydney- based company is seeking to boost returns for shareholders in a stock that remains at about half its February 2007 peak.

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