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Shindico acquires Winnipeg shopping centre portfolio

Six properties focus on needs-based, neighbourhood retail

Some of the local shopping centres included in Shindico's purchase of a Winnipeg portfolio. (Courtesy Shindico)
Some of the local shopping centres included in Shindico's purchase of a Winnipeg portfolio. (Courtesy Shindico)

Winnipeg-based Shindico Realty says its acquisition of six local community shopping centres, totalling 228,018 square feet of leasable area with 52 tenants, is a vote of confidence in the city's retail sector.

The properties include Stafford Square, Tyndall Market, Dunkirk Place, Moore Square, Moore Centre and 3500 Portage Ave. They were previously owned by a family office.

Shindico was established in 1975 and today it owns 133 properties for a total of just over 5.8 million square feet, spread across various real estate classes.

“We have one of the best asset management teams in Canada and that bolsters our confidence in the additional retail assets,” Shindico president Sandy Shindleman told RENX in an interview.

“Most of the assets are in neighbourhoods where we’re already there and so they’re going to get facade upgrades, roof upgrades and parking upgrades and that will be ongoing starting in the spring through next year.”

Financial details of the acquisition, which closed in September, were not released.

Volatility of the Winnipeg retail market

While consumers have returned to stores, the Winnipeg retail market remains volatile, Shindleman explained.

He noted it’s currently difficult to receive entitlements and competitive construction costs but hope prevails for those, like Shindico, who have existing well-anchored assets.

“The consumer is back in the stores, but finding help in those stores remains a challenge. Restaurants are full, even though some have shorter hours for the same reason," Shindleman observed, noting the newly acquired properties all have needs-based anchors including grocery stores and discount stores.

"We have known the owner of these assets for over 60 years and his desire was to see them in competent, capable hands to continue the legacy. 

“As new owners, we have new ideas for managing, improving and hopefully leasing the vacancy. We had represented several tenants in the portfolio and know the strengths and weaknesses of them.

"We had pre-arranged favourable financing on this portfolio, so we decided to complete as our reputation is doing just that.”

Shindico’s general counsel Justin Zarnowski said it represented a great example of a transaction where everyone was on the same page.

“The vendor wanted to ensure the properties continued to be owned and managed by a local company and Shindico was a perfect fit for that objective. Everyone involved in this deal took their lead from that great synergy and worked together to resolve any issues that arose,” he said.

The transaction was done in collaboration with Brian Taillieu of Colliers International.

The Pembina Crossing development

1910 Pembina Highway in Winnipeg. (Courtesy Shindico)
 Pembina Crossing at 1910 Pembina Hwy. in Winnipeg is on the sale block. (Courtesy Shindico)

Shindico also recently brought to market a listing for the sale of 100 per cent freehold interest in Pembina Crossing, a mixed-use development located at 1910 Pembina Hwy. in Winnipeg.

Pembina Crossing is a fully leased 280,981-square-foot centre including a 51,357-square-foot medical office building for the Winnipeg Regional Health Authority’s ACCESS Fort Garry.

Major tenants include Save On Foods, Staples, Dollarama and Best Buy.

Shindleman said the property is primarily owned by two Canadian pension funds.

“It was built as an enclosed mall probably around 1980 and was de-malled in the '90s, and we’ve been managing it since 1998. So it’s gone through a couple of major renovations and expansions,” he said.

“I think pension funds are just trying to recycle some capital at this time. There’s no product available in Winnipeg like this, of this quality, that’s been actively listed for sale. People from across the country have seen it.”

Interested parties will be required to execute and submit a confidentiality agreement prior to receiving detailed information about the property. Offers will be reviewed upon receipt, Shindico says in the listing.

Shindleman said there are many multi\residential homes being built in the vicinity of the shopping plaza - about 1,500 to 1,600 units.

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