Profit at Macerich Co. more than tripled in the third quarter to $39.7 million, as the Santa Monica-based shopping mall owner benefited from the sale of $23 million worth of assets.
Macerich earned 69 cents a share in the quarter ended Sept. 30, the real estate investment trust said Tuesday. That compared with a profit of $11.7 million, or 32 cents, a year earlier. Revenue rose 18% to $117.4 million.
Income from operations, a key measure of profitability for REITs, rose to $63.7 million, or 85 cents a share, from $53.6 million, or 85 cents a share, a year earlier and barely missed analysts' estimates of 86 cents, according to Thomson First Call.
"It really was a flat quarter," said Los Angeles money manager Craig Silvers of Bricks & Mortar Capital, who does not own shares of Macerich.
Macerich bought Westcor, a Phoenix-based mall chain, last year. Since then, it has replaced the debt incurred to buy Westcor with equity and sold some properties that didn't fit its core portfolio. Macerich also raised the number of shares outstanding from 62 million to 75 million.
Without the debt refinancing on the Westcor acquisition, funds from operations would have grown 9% a share in the third quarter, said Arthur Coppola, president and chief executive.
Same-tenant sales in Macerich malls were up 1.9% from a year earlier. The company expects sales to continue to improve through Christmas.
Shares of Macerich fell 10 cents to $40.90 on the New York Stock Exchange.