Warner Plaza, an approximately 115,000-square-foot neighborhood shopping center, has been sold by Plaza International, a private company that has owned the asset for 41 years. The buyer is ROIC Warner Plaza, LLC, an entity of the Retail Opportunity Investment Corporation, a publicly traded REIT. The purchase price was $76.3 million.
Warner Plaza is located at 21841 Ventura Boulevard in Woodland Hills, California and is situated just east of the corner of Topanga Canyon and Ventura boulevards and adjacent to the 101 Freeway. The property is anchored by Sprouts Farmers Market and includes such notable tenants as Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, Dickies BBQ and Jerry’s Famous Deli.
Bill Bauman, executive vice president, and Kyle Miller, senior managing director, of Savills Studley’s National Retail Services Group, brought the buyer and seller together in an off-market transaction.
“Plaza International was able to exchange the shopping center for shares of the buyer’s publically traded company via an UPREIT,” explained Miller. “This allowed the seller to defer capital gains taxes and benefit from the growth of a stable and well-positioned real estate company that pays a healthy dividend.”
The seller acquired the land in 1972 from Kaiser Aetna and developed the shopping center in 1974.
“The property is extremely well positioned and the buyer recognized the value of what is essentially an irreplaceable location along one of the most dominant retail thoroughfares in the San Fernando Valley,” said Bauman.
Woodland Hills is one of the most dynamic submarkets in the Valley, with the expansion, redevelopment and completion of a number of significant retail and mixed-use properties including Warner Center and the Village at Westfield Topanga. The city is actively encouraging additional development and according to the area’s 2035 Plan, the community anticipates an additional 14 million square feet of non-residential building, 20,000 residential dwellings and 49,000 jobs.
Savills Studley has represented ROIC previously, having sold the REIT a three-property portfolio located in Southern California in early 2015. ROIC owns a total of 72 shopping centers in California, Washington and Oregon.