GEORGE WESTON TO BECOME 65% UNITHOLDER OF CHOICE PROPERTIES REIT
TORONTO, Sept. 4, 2018 /CNW/ - Choice Properties Real Estate Investment Trust (TSX:CHP.UN, "Choice" or "Choice Properties") today confirmed support for the plan announced by Loblaw Companies Limited (TSX:L, "Loblaw") and George Weston Limited (TSX:WN, "GWL") for a proposed reorganization, under which Loblaw will spin out its 61.6% interest in Choice Properties. Each Loblaw common shareholder, other than GWL, will receive GWL common shares that are equivalent in value to their pro rata interest in Choice Properties. GWL currently directly owns 3.8% of Choice, and following the completion of the proposed transaction, GWL's interest in Choice will be 65.4%.
Although no approval is required from the Choice Board of Trustees or the Choice unitholders for the proposed spin-out, the Board of Trustees and management of Choice Properties are supportive of the transaction.
Stephen Johnson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Choice Properties, said, "This transaction, which results in our major shareholder becoming GWL instead of Loblaw, will improve clarity for all Choice investors as we continue to reposition and grow our business as a major property owner and developer. Through its direct ownership in Choice Properties, GWL is committed to support Choice's future growth plans as a long-term owner, manager and developer of a high-quality, diversified real estate portfolio."
The transaction will have no impact on the important, ongoing relationship between Loblaw and Choice Properties. All current agreements and arrangements with Loblaw, including the Strategic Alliance Agreement and leases, will remain in place after the spin-out. In addition, Loblaw will continue to be Choice Properties' largest tenant.
The credit ratings from Standard and Poor's and DBRS for Choice Properties are not expected to change as a result of this ownership exchange transaction.
About Choice Properties REIT
Choice Properties, Canada's preeminent diversified real estate investment trust, is the owner and manager of a high-quality real estate portfolio, comprising 757 properties totaling 67.0 million square feet of gross leasable area. The Choice Properties' portfolio consists of retail properties predominantly leased to necessity‐based tenants, as well as industrial, office and residential assets concentrated in attractive markets. Choice Properties also has a significant property development program. Choice Properties' strategic alliance with its principal tenant, Loblaw, the country's leading retailer, is a key competitive advantage providing long-term growth opportunities. For more information, visit Choice Properties' website at www.choicereit.ca and Choice Properties' issuer profile at www.sedar.com.
This press release for Choice Properties contains forward-looking statements concerning the expected impact of the proposed spin-out of Loblaw's interest in Choice Properties on Choice Properties' relationship with Loblaw and GWL going forward and its credit ratings. Forward-looking statements are typically identified by words such as "expect", "anticipate", "believe", "foresee", "could", "estimate", "goal", "intend", "plan", "seek", "strive", "will", "may" and "should" and similar expressions. Forward-looking statements reflect current estimates, beliefs and assumptions, which are based on Choice Properties' perception of historical trends, current conditions and expected future developments, as well as other factors management believes are appropriate in the circumstances. Choice Properties' estimates, beliefs and assumptions are inherently subject to significant business, economic, competitive and other uncertainties and contingencies regarding future events and as such, are subject to change. Choice Properties can give no assurance that such estimates, beliefs and assumptions will prove to be correct.
Numerous risks and uncertainties could cause Choice Properties' actual results to differ materially from the estimates, beliefs and assumptions expressed or implied in those forward-looking statements.
Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which reflect Choice Properties' expectations only as of the date of this release. Choice Properties disclaims any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by law.
SOURCE Choice Properties Real Estate Investment Trust
For further information: Mario Barrafato, Chief Financial Officer, 416‐628‐7872, [email protected]