Morristown, NJ — The Hampshire Companies, a full service, private real estate investment firm, announces the acquisition of a six store Walmart Neighborhood Markets portfolio totaling 255,968 s/f in southern Louisiana from SkilkenGold Real Estate Development. The properties were acquired in a joint venture with Hanna Asset Management Company from Seoul, South Korea, and several of their institutional and retail investors.
The portfolio consists of six, newly constructed free-standing retail stores located throughout southern Louisiana in Houma, Meraux, New Iberia, Opelousas, Prairieville and Thibodaux. Part of Walmart’s Neighborhood Market concept, the portfolio features smaller stores, averaging around 42,000 s/f with a focus on offering a full suite of groceries, pharmacy, health and beauty aids, and a limited selection of general merchandise. The Walmart Neighborhood Market concept is a pure grocery store business model that is separate and distinct from Walmart’s Supercenter strategy, which is comprised of large megastores that merchandise a wide array of recreational items, household goods and apparel at low prices in addition to grocery products.
With a market share of 40% in Louisiana, Walmart is the number one grocer in the state. The fully-leased, single-tenant buildings were attractive to The Hampshire Companies and their foreign investor partners since the portfolio provides stable, core assets that are well-positioned for continued strong performance.
“We continue to see foreign investors looking to utilize capital to purchase core investments with well-known, strong tenants in mature and established markets across the country,” said Robert Schmitt, a principal of The Hampshire Companies. “Our knowledge of the U.S. real estate market, global economy, and proven, cycle-tested investment strategies made us an ideal partner for this investment with our South Korean partners. We look forward to continuing to work with them to target asset classes that align with our investment strategy and their long-term goals.”
Walmart Neighborhood Markets present Walmart with the opportunity to target growth in more mature, urban and suburban markets, and are the largest potential growth format for the company in the United States. Walmart currently operates 699 Neighborhood Markets in 31 states and Puerto Rico. Walmart’s Neighborhood Market strategy has been a significant contributor to the retailer’s turnaround and showcases Walmart’s commitment to sustainable and strategic growth.
“Our decision to acquire this portfolio of assets in southern Louisiana was motivated by Walmart’s focus on long-term sustainable growth and our strategy of acquiring stable, core assets in strong marketplaces,” said John Goldsmith, a portfolio manager for The Hampshire Companies. “Walmart’s Neighborhood Market concept was developed with the current and future needs of consumers in mind and will allow these six stores to serve their local markets well into the future and offer us stable income generating assets.”