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S. Florida investors pick St. Cloud for first retail plaza buy; seller to reinvest locally

A South Florida investment company is the new owner of 61,420 square feet of office and retail space in St. Cloud.
A South Florida investment company is the new owner of 61,420 square feet of office and retail space in St. Cloud. (Osceola County)

A South Florida couple who started their own real estate investment company in 1999 bought their first Greater Orlando property this week, a St. Cloud retail/office plaza for $2.3 million.

"We are a low-key, small investor," Joy Ganaishlal told GrowthSpotter. "We've had residential rentals in South Florida and one commercial entity in Fort Lauderdale, but it's a warehouse. This is our first venture into retail."

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The Ashton Retail Shoppes are located at 2001 Hickory Tree Road, just south of the U.S. 192 intersection. The property's two strip centers were built in 2005 and 2007 and comprise a total of 14,400 square feet.

The plaza is immediately south of a 7-11 store, southeast of the U.S. 192-Hickory Tree Road intersection.
The plaza is immediately south of a 7-11 store, southeast of the U.S. 192-Hickory Tree Road intersection. (Osceola County)

Ganaishlal said the plaza is almost fully leased. "It has one available space that is already built out for a medical office," she said.

Joy's spouse Premnath Ganaishlal is the managing member of the investment corporation, P523 Inc., based in Coral Springs.

The purchase fulfilled a 1031-exchange requirement for the company. The balance of the purchase was financed with a $900,000 balloon mortgage from Fairwinds Credit Union.

The property was sold by original developer Reich Properties. CEO John Reich said his company bought the corner parcel back in 1996 and first built the adjacent 7-11 store. They recently sold the 7-11 and put the strip centers on the market.

"They have been good properties," he told GrowthSpotter on Friday. "We just decided to sell them because we could get a low 8 cap rate – that was a good number for us."

Reich said his company will be looking to place the entire $2.3 million from the sale to fulfill a 1031 exchange.

"We would love to find some improved commericial property, but that's hard to find these days," he said. "I think the opportunity right now is to buy land and develop it, so we're looking at sites in Osceola and the Lake Nona market. That's our area."

Have a tip about Central Florida development? Contact me at lkinsler@GrowthSpotter.com or (407)420-6261, or tweet me at @LKinslerOGrowth. Follow GrowthSpotter on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

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