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It's Good Times For Grocery-Anchored Retail As Another Big Center Is Snapped Up

New Market Properties has sold Champions Village Shopping Center, a 383K SF retail center, to First National Realty Partners.

Champion's Village Randalls

The center, which is anchored by Randalls, is on 31.9 acres at 5215 FM 1960 Road W. in Northwest Houston. JLL, which marketed it, called the property one of the largest and best-located urban infill sites in the market. Senior Managing Directors Chris Gerard and Ryan West, Vice President Sherri Rollins and analyst Ethan Goldberg, all of JLL, represented the seller.

“Capital continues to seek quality retail assets, given the attractive yields still available today,” West said in a release, adding the transaction marked First National Realty Partners’ Texas debut.

Other than Randalls, the center includes national retailers like Barnes & Noble, T.J. Maxx and Bath and Body Works, among others.

Grocery-anchored retail made up the largest share of retail property acquisitions last year, with $13.3B bought in 2021, JLL stated in its Grocery Tracker 2022 report. The 735 trades last year represented the second-highest sales volume in recorded history, and JLL called 2021 a banner year for grocery-anchored retail.

"As the dust settles, one fact has become irrefutable: grocery retailers were among the biggest winners of the pandemic," JLL states in the report. "As an essential business that played a critical role in ensuring food supply during a time of great uncertainty, the grocery industry grew by 9.4% in 2020 and sustained that growth in 2021, with total grocery sales reaching $803 billion last year, representing a nearly 16.0% increase over pre-pandemic levels."

Private capital is the largest buyer of grocery-anchored retail, JLL states, at more than two-thirds of the market. Public REITs are also spending more year-over-year on grocery-anchored retail, making up 17% of buyers versus last year's 9.8%.

"Renewed interest from international capital pushed investments in U.S. grocery-anchored assets to just under $600 million, nearly double the amount seen in 2020. We expect grocery-anchored properties will continue to be the bedrock of the retail debt markets," JLL stated in the report.