Japan-US Business Report Logo

No. 357, June 1999

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Japanese Companies in the US


CONSTRUCTION AND REAL ESTATE

Hoping to raise $3.9 billion by February 2002 by selling off assets, a struggling DAIEI, INC. has agreed to sell the Ala Moana Center in Honolulu to GENERAL GROWTH PROPERTIES, INC. for $810 million. The mall is the largest open-air shopping center in the world with approximately 1.8 million square feet of leasable space. It has many upscale tenants as well as more mainstream stores. Daiei, Japan's biggest retailer, has owned the Ala Moana Center since 1982, first in partnership with EQUITABLE LIFE INSURANCE CO. but since 1995 by itself. Chicago-headquartered General Growth Properties, which specializes in shopping centers, is the second-largest U.S. commercial property developer. It has managed the Ala Moana Center for the last 10 years.

Financial pressures also have forced two other firms to join the exodus of real estate investors and developers from the American market. DIA KENSETSU CO., LTD., Japan's number-three builder of condominiums, will liquidate its Honolulu condominium development subsidiary within FY 1999. It already has sold a hotel in San Diego, California and an office building in Seattle. Similarly, midsized contractor TEKKEN CORP. will complete its withdrawal from the U.S. market by March 2000. This past March, it liquidated a New York City real estate development subsidiary. The same fate awaits a San Diego, California affiliate working on a local resort hotel project.

An exchange rate of ¥122=$1.00 was used in this report.aaaaaa

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