CHICAGO--(BUSINESS WIRE/AETOSWire)-- Grupo Acosta Verde (“Acosta Verde” or the “Company”), a Mexican shopping center owner/operator sponsored by Equity International, a private equity firm founded by Sam Zell, successfully completed a merger with a Special Purpose Acquisition Company (“SPAC”) of Promecap, S.A de C.V., a leading private equity firm in Mexico. As a result of the merger, Acosta Verde became a newly formed publicly listed company on the Bolsa Mexicana de Valores trading under the ticker GAV. The Company is internally managed, fostering alignment among shareholders, management, and the board.
“Acosta Verde now has a fortress balance sheet with substantial cash to deploy,” stated Tom Heneghan, Chief Executive Officer of Equity International. “The company is actively looking to opportunistically allocate capital to various growth initiatives to enhance scale, liquidity and value for its shareholders.”
Equity International made its first investment in Acosta Verde in 2015. The Company was founded 40 years ago by Jesus Acosta Verde. Since then, the partnership enabled Acosta Verde to double in size from nine shopping centers to 18.
Acosta Verde specializes in the “Sendero” shopping center concept, which is anchored by a hypermarket alongside a high-quality tenant base, focusing on Mexico’s growing middle-class and necessity-based shopping. The centers target the middle-market segment of the Mexican retail sector, which is historically fragmented and underpenetrated. Despite temporary closures due to impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic, all malls are currently reopened, are recovering quickly, and are outperforming many other retail formats given their durable concept. The Company is in the process of launching an online marketplace, which will allow its tenants to sell products online.
“We continue to see strong demand from our consumer base for our shopping center offerings, and we are constantly looking at new initiatives to stay at the forefront of the sector,” said Jesus Acosta Castellanos, Chief Executive Officer of Acosta Verde. “Since Equity International’s investment through year-end 2019, we have achieved same-store-sales growth rates close to 10% and attractive development yields. There is tremendous opportunity in our target market that we believe will continue after the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic subsides.”
“Acosta Verde’s management team has a track record spanning more than three decades of growing high-quality centers and providing great consumer experiences. The addition of an institutional-quality partner and investor such as Promecap further catalyzes growth and positions the company as a leader in Mexico,” added Brian Finerty, Equity International’s Chief Investment Officer. “This is our second portfolio company to go public in 2020 and we are excited to take the next step in the evolution of Acosta Verde.”