Vestar, UBS buy Los Angeles retail center

The Phoenix-based real estate firm and the real estate arm of the Swiss financial services giant have jointly acquired a 300,000-square-foot retail center in Los Angeles County for $87.3 million.

A joint venture between a Phoenix-based real estate investment firm and the real estate arm of Swiss financial services giant UBS have jointly acquired a 300,000-square-foot retail center in Los Angeles County. 

Vestar and UBS Global Asset Management have purchased Peninsula Center from Principal Real Estate Investors for $87.3 million. UBS acquired its share of the asset on behalf of its open-ended core vehicle, UBS Trumbull Property Fund. Under the terms of the venture, Vestar will serve as the operating partner for the property.

“Peninsula Center provides us with a value-added investment opportunity in a coastal market,” said Vestar president Rick Kuhle in a statement. “Our goal is to significantly upgrade the center with new landscape and amenities while bringing in new retailers.” He added that the firm is aggressively seeking more properties like Peninsula Center throughout the western US.

Located on a 24.7-acre site in Rolling Hills Estates, California, Peninsula Center is 88 percent leased. Tenants include national retail outlets Rite Aid, TJ Maxx, Pier 1 Imports and Petco. Principal Real Estate Investors originally purchased the asset in 2000 for $48.6 million, according to data provider Real Capital Analytics. 

This acquisition marks Vestar's second retail center acquisition in southern California in the past six months. In September 2012, the firm acquired Riverside Plaza, a 475,211-square-foot shopping center in Riverside, California, for $84.84 million. That purchase also was made through a joint venture with UBS. 

Kuhle told PERE in an email: “Vestar and UBS have a longstanding relationship, partnering on [more than] $1 billion of shopping centers.”

Separately, the Peninsula transaction follows the announcement earlier this month that UBS Global Asset Management acquired Downtown Pleasant Hill Shopping Center, a 345,687-square-foot retail center in the San Francisco Bay Area, from Loja Real Estate for approximately $100 million.