Simon Plans Billions in Investment

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Simon recently opened outlets in South Korea and France. Simon recently opened outlets in South Korea and France.
INDIANAPOLIS -

Indianapolis-based Simon Property Group Inc. (NYSE: SPG) says it expects to pump about $1 billion both this year and next into its shopping, dining, entertainment and mixed-use properties. The Real Estate Investment Trust says it has already invested more than $5 billion into development projects throughout the United States over the past five years.

Chief Executive Officer David Simon says "nothing is more important" to the company than "investments in our physical product to enhance our guests' experience." He is taking part this week in this year's RECon Global Retail Real Estate Convention in Las Vegas.

Simon says two of the major projects are in Texas. Enhancements at the Houston Galleria include new flooring and upgraded lighting, seating and landscaping. Work at La Plaza Mall in McAllen includes the redevelopment of a former Sears store, which will ultimately include four anchors, six restaurants and 25 specialty shops.

Other significant projects are happening in New Jersey, Edmonton, Denver and Florida.

Last month, the Real Estate Investment Trust released better-than-expected quarterly results. Simon reported Funds From Operations of $985 million, compared to $951.8 million during the same period the previous year. The company has also recently opened outlets in South Korea and France, and is involved in developments in Texas, Malaysia, Virginia and Canada that are expected to open within a year.

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