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Press release from PR Newswire

Starwood Capital Group Completes Acquisition Of Shopping Centers From Westfield Group

Friday, June 29, 2012

Starwood Capital Group Completes Acquisition Of Shopping Centers From Westfield Group08:00 EDT Friday, June 29, 2012Names Scott Wolstein as CEO of Newly Formed Starwood Retail Partners. CBL Retained to Provide a Variety of Property Management Services.GREENWICH, Conn., June 29, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Starwood Capital Group, a leading global private investment firm, today announced that an affiliate of Starwood has completed its acquisition of a 90% majority interest in seven U.S. shopping centers from the Westfield Group (ASX: WDC).  Westfield retained a 10% minority interest in the portfolio. Starwood also announced that it has formed a new subsidiary, Starwood Retail Partners ("SRP"), to oversee the management of the newly acquired assets and named Scott Wolstein as the chief executive officer of SRP.  Mr. Wolstein brings extensive international experience in the retail industry, having co-founded and turned DDR into one of the world's largest owners and managers of shopping centers. Starwood Retail Partners will be based in Chicago. The SRP team will be partnering with local communities to enhance the shopping and entertainment experience of each location.  CBL & Associates Properties, Inc. ("CBL") has been retained to provide a variety of management services for six of the acquired assets under the direction of SRP.  These services will include accounting, specialty retail, branding and marketing services as well as maintenance and security.  "We are very excited about the opportunity to bring Starwood's best-in-class investing and management expertise to the evolving retail space," said Mr. Wolstein.  "Shopping centers in the United States are undergoing a transformation as junior anchors and value retailers are rethinking store size and distribution needs, to the benefit of regional malls, including the ones we recently acquired from Westfield.  We expect to build on this platform in the years to come.""It is a compliment to our organization to have Starwood's endorsement of CBL's management expertise," said Stephen Lebovitz, president and chief executive officer of CBL. "Within our own portfolio of market dominant regional malls, we have been successful in generating improved performance by utilizing our operational capabilities and we look forward to applying that knowledge to the Starwood portfolio."The malls acquired from Westfield include: Chicago Ridge Mall in Chicago, IL; Gateway Mall in Lincoln, NE; Metreon in San Francisco, CA; Louis Joliet Mall in Chicago, IL; Solano Mall in Fairfield, CA; SouthPark Mall in Cleveland, OH; and Westland Mall, Miami, FL. Collectively, the malls consist of more than 6.6 million square feet.About CBL & Associates Properties, Inc.CBL is one of the largest and most active owners and developers of malls and shopping centers in the United States.  CBL owns, holds interest in or manages 165 properties, including 95 regional malls/open-air centers.  The properties are located in 28 states and total 92.5 million square feet including 9.4 million square feet of non-owned shopping centers managed for third parties.  Headquartered in Chattanooga, TN, CBL has regional offices in Boston (Waltham), MA, Dallas (Irving), TX, and St. Louis, MO.  Additional information can be found at www.cblproperties.com. About Starwood Capital GroupStarwood Capital Group is a private, U.S.-based investment firm with a core focus on global real estate.  Since the group's inception in 1991, the firm has raised $14.5 billion of equity capital and, through its various funds, has invested $12 billion representing nearly $33 billion in assets.  Starwood Capital Group currently has nearly $20 billion of assets under management. Starwood Capital Group maintains offices in Greenwich, Atlanta, San Francisco, Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles, and affiliated offices in London, Luxembourg, Paris, Mumbai and Sao Paulo.  Starwood Capital Group has invested in nearly every class of real estate on a global basis, including office, retail, residential, senior housing, golf, hotels, resorts and industrial assets.  Starwood Capital Group and its affiliates have successfully executed an investment strategy that includes building enterprises around core real estate portfolios in both the private and public markets.  Additional information about Starwood Capital can be found at www.starwoodcapital.com. SOURCE Starwood Capital GroupFor further information: Tom Johnson, Abernathy MacGregor, +1-212-371-5999