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CBL & Associates Properties, Inc. (CBL - Snapshot Report) recently announced that it has signed an agreement to acquire Northgate Mall in Chattanooga, TN, for $11.5 million. The transaction is expected to close by October, 6 2011.

Northgate Mall is an 823,000-square-foot regional mall located in CBL’s hometown of Chattanooga. The mall is strategically located with easy accessibility and greater visibility and is currently 91.0% leased. Following the closure of this transaction, CBL plans to reinvigorate the property through redevelopments, which may include the addition of junior anchor stores and restaurants.

This transaction is expected to enhance the company’s position in its hometown, Chattanooga. The company is undertaking various initiatives to make the property best positioned to meet the growing retail demand. Chattanooga has been experiencing tremendous growth with several major new employers entering this area.  

CBL also owns and manages Hamilton Place Mall, a 1.3-million-square-foot dominant super-regional enclosed mall as well as five associated centers and two office buildings, including its headquarters, in the Chattanooga market.

Headquartered in Chattanooga, TN, CBL is one of the largest and most active owners and developers of malls and shopping centers in the United States. CBL owns, holds interests in or manages 158 properties, including 85 regional malls/open-air centers. The properties are located in 27 states totaling 85.3 million square feet.

CBLcurrently retains a Zacks #3 Rank, which translates into a short-term Hold rating. We are also maintaining our long-term Neutral recommendation on the stock. One of its competitors, Simon Property Group Inc (SPG - Analyst Report) also holds a Zacks #3 Rank.

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