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Introducing General Growth Properties: Company and Series Overview


Sep. 23 2015, Published 12:46 p.m. ET

GGP’s history

General Growth Properties (GGP) was formed by two brothers, Martin and Matthew Bucksbaum, in 1954. In the same year, the company opened Town & Country Shopping Center in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. In 1960, the company opened its second center, Duck Creek Plaza in Bettendorf, Iowa. This was the first mall of the company to have a department store—Younkers—as an anchor.

In 1972, GGP became a publicly traded company on the New York Stock Exchange. However, by 1984, the company’s management sold some of its assets and took the company private. Nevertheless, the company issued another public offer in 1993 and raised money for expansion. In 1995, the company moved its headquarters from Iowa to Chicago.

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Business interest

GGP operates as a self-administered and self-managed REIT (real estate investment trust). GGP is an S&P 500 company that focuses exclusively on owning, managing, leasing, and redeveloping retail properties throughout the United States.


GGP is the second-largest retail REIT company in the US, after Simon Property Group (SPG), with a market capitalization of $22.1 billion. The company competes with numerous other malls, outlet centers, community and lifestyle centers, and shopping centers in the US and abroad. The company also competes with internet retailing sites that provide retailers with distribution options beyond existing brick and mortar retail properties.

Apart from the Chicago-based Simon Property Group, other major competitors of GGP in the regional malls REIT space include:

  • California-based Macerich Company (MAC)
  • Tennessee-based CBL & Associates Properties (CBL)
  • Michigan-based Taubman Centers (TCO)

GGP makes up 4.20% of the holdings of the iShares Cohen & Steers REIT ETF (ICF).

In the next part of this series, we’ll look at GGP’s key business segments.

Other series parts

  1. “Introducing General Growth Properties: Company and Series Overview”
  2. “General Growth Properties’ Key Business Segments”
  3. “General Growth Properties’ Top Tenants in Retail”
  4. “General Growth Properties’ Acquisition Growth Strategy”
  5. “General Growth Properties’ Plans to Increase Shareholder Returns”
  6. “General Growth Properties’ Crucial Key Operating Metrics”
  7. “General Growth Properties’ Decent Revenue Growth in 2013 and 2014”
  8. “General Growth Properties’ Essential Cost Structure Breakdown”
  9. “General Growth Properties Records Highest Funds from Operations in 2014”
  10. “General Growth Properties Offers Steady Dividend to Shareholders”
  11. “General Growth Properties’ Debt-to-Equity Ratio One of the Lowest in Peer Group”
  12. “General Growth Properties Trades at Low Price-to-FFO Multiple in 2015”
  13. “How to Invest in General Growth Properties through ETFs”

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