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Schnuck Family to Sell Majority Stake in Shopping Centers to Austrailian Trust

From the Sydney Morning Herald via Urban St. Louis forum:

MACQUARIE CountryWide Trust has expanded further into North America, buying a controlling interest in 33 retail centres from the Schnuck family worth $US260 million in a joint venture with the Regency Centers Corporation.

Under the deal the Schnuck family will retain 20 per cent of the portfolio, with Macquarie CountryWide owning 65 per cent and Regency the remaining 15 per cent.


Above: Grand opening of Schnuck’s store at Loughborough Commons in South St. Louis, August 2006.

Austrailia’s Hearald-Sun writes:

Of the 33 shopping centres in the deal, 26 are in the greater St Louis area.

The centres will be managed by Regency and the Schnuck family’s DESCO Group.

I’m not exactly sure what this will mean for us locally. Maybe this will be a good thing to have some outside perspective? Given the “value” of these shopping centers, and the $14 million in tax subsidy for Loughborough Commons alone, I fail to see why better pedestrian access could not have been included in the project’s designs.

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UPDATE 7/9/07 @ 12:45pm:

The St. Louis Business Journal has a slightly different percentages and some more detail (full story):

Macquarie CountryWide Trust (MCW) is buying a 60 percent stake in the portfolio. MCW is managed by a division of Macquarie Bank Group, based in Sydney, Australia. Macquarie Bank Group’s real estate division manages a portfolio of assets totaling more than $23 billion globally. In a joint venture with MCW, Jacksonville, Fla.-based Regency Centers Corp. is buying a 13 percent stake in the portfolio.

I’m willing to bet that the Schnuck’s grocery store chain will announce within the next 12 months they are being sold.


Currently there are "12 comments" on this Article:

  1. john says:

    There has been a large but unseen “FOR SALE” sign on StL’s businesses for many years. When old line company founders like the Edwards, May, Schnucks, etc. decide to sell all or a major part of their companies, all citizens should be concerned. The meaning is clear… insiders are cashing in and want out asap. Wealthy and well established families can afford and do receive the best in financial and tax advice. They’re not buying, they’re selling… wake up StL! This trend has been evident for over 20 years but most here prefer to keep their heads buried and collectively stuck in the tar pit of ignorance.

  2. Jim Zavist says:

    I wouldn’t hold my breath on any significant changes. Typically, when investors buy this type of real estate, they’re looking more at maintaining cash flow than in “reinventing the wheel”. And I agree, I wouldn’t be surprised if the grocery business is sold soon, as well – it’s a highly competetive business and consolidation is happening nationwide.

  3. Reginald Pennypacker III says:

    “They’re not buying, they’re selling… wake up StL! This trend has been evident for over 20 years but most here prefer to keep their heads buried and collectively stuck in the tar pit of ignorance. ”
    Are you propsing that they not be allowed to sell?
    Another way for this to change is for you to buy one of these businesses. But that
    would take effort. It’s easier to whine.

  4. headcounter says:

    While I know that it is easy to bash corporate America, having a supermarket chain, or any privately owned chain, based in your town is a benefit, and not just in taxes.

    When families get to a certain size, certain members want to cash out, and to keep them happy, ways of getting money out of the company are found. I don’t think that is necessarily unique to St. Louis. Hilton Hotels is being taken private and I doubt that anyone is saying ‘(wherever the Hiltons are from) is going down the tubes.’

    As for Stl waking up, ok, I am awake, what am I supposed to do? Give people who presumably don’t need the money, even more money?

  5. kuros says:

    There was a rumor floating around that Publix http://www.publix.com/ was considering taking over Schnucks

  6. Jim Zavist says:

    There are plenty of potential buyers out there. King Soopers was a local chain in Colorado (comparable in size to Schnuck’s) that was acquired by Krogers about ten years ago. Nothing really changed, including the name, on the customer side. I’m sure changes occured “behind the scene”. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Supermarkets_in_the_United_States#National_chains for a list of the many potential suitors.

  7. typo says:

    Perhaps the infusion of cash is to purchase real estate on the near north side.

  8. newsteve says:

    I saw several DESCO people this morning. They are saying that the money will allow them to develop more property and expand.

  9. a.torch says:

    I doubt Kroger’s will come back into STL. I talked to a mid-level Kroger exec two years ago in Ohio and I was lamenting the fact that we didn’t have a Kroger within 50 miles, he said they had no plans to move back into this market. It would be great if they did though, they are one of the better Midwest chains.

  10. Maurice says:

    Many years ago when Krogers was here, the unions tried to get into the stores. Kroger said that if the unions gained entrance, they would close in the area.

    Vote taken , stores closed.

    I would rather pressure Diebergs to move into the City…FINALLY

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