North Miami-based investor Yoram Izhak is looking to spend $200 million this year and has at least two deals in the works for a warehouse and retail center in Broward County.
Last month he divested one of multiple shopping centers he purchased across South Florida beginning in 2010. Izhak, manager of Mya Properties LLC, sold Sample Plaza at 1000 E. Sample Road in Pompano Beach for $5.5 million.
It was an unusual move for the investor who spent $375 million in the last 3½ years on deals in Miami-Dade, Broward, Palm Beach and Orange counties.
“Basically we buy for long-term investment. We don’t sell,” he said. “This one I sold because we made a very good profit.”
Mya Properties bought Sample Plaza for $4.2 million from Kimco Delaware Inc. in 2011 as part of a portfolio and sold it for about a 40 percent gain to Sample Plaza Center LLC, whose principals are Brazilian real estate developers Armando Carmo Couri and Joao Vitor Menin Teixeira De Souza.
Before the sale, Izhak made major upgrades and inked leases with Amscot and Advance Auto Parts, adding $180,000 in rent revenue. The new tenants joined anchors Save-A-Lot and Dollar General.
“I think it was one of those win-win deals where everybody did well,” said broker Jonathan Gerszberg, a senior associate with Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services, who represented Izhak. “The seller took advantage of a strong market to capitalize his property. And the buyer got a good price of $85 per square foot, which is as low as I’ve seen for a stabilized shopping center.”
That deal closed Dec. 27.
Days later, Izhak said he was in advanced negotiations on at least two Broward acquisitions scheduled to wrap in the next six weeks.
He’s under contract for more than 181,000 square feet of industrial space at 1201 NE 38th St. in Oakland Park, where tenants include the Funky Buddha Brewery.
And he’s eyeing a 150,000-square-foot retail center in Sunrise.
“We’re looking to spend $200 million more in 2014,” Izhak said. “Our projection is between $150 [million], hoping to go to $200 million.”
Izhak, who is also president of IMC Property Management Inc., spent about $56 million on three Broward shopping centers in 2012. He bought the Lauderhill Mall from SouthEast Properties Inc. for $18 million, and spent $14.9 million for Lincoln Park Shopping Center in Sunrise and $23 million for Lakes Mall in Lauderdale Lakes. Two years earlier, he bought Miami’s Northside Shopping Center for $18 million.
His companies attract national tenants and spend millions on upgrades to newly acquired properties.
After he bought the Lauderhill Mall, for instance, IMC spent $6 million on renovations. The shopping center has since gained leases with Dunkin’ Donuts and Goodwill Superstore. And instead of relocating, the Broward County Supervisor of Elections remained at the mall, extending the lease for two years and adding 32,000 square feet.
But not all of Izhak’s ventures have been seamless.
In 2012, the Miami-Dade County Commission rejected a deal that would have granted $3 million for improvements to a Liberty City shopping center his family owned at Northwest 79th Street and 27th Avenue.
Over the years, he has made headlines for a tax evasion conviction in 2004, for which he received probation and a small fine, and a 2003 misdemeanor conviction of taking a loaded gun aboard an airplane. In March 2011 he feuded with Miami Police Chief Miguel Exposito, who attorneys said linked the investor with organized crime.
“The Miami-Dade [controversy] was all political,” Izhak said. “We’re now doing investments without any help from government. We’re not using any more government money or county money, and honestly we’re happier.”