Eastland Mall’s owner in ‘substantial doubt’ about the future

Local News

 BLOOMINGTON, Ill. (WMBD) — The owner of Eastland Mall in Bloomington wrote it has “substantial doubt” about its future due to COVID-19’s economic impact.

Tennessee-based CBL Properties said it received just 27% of rent owed from its properties in April and will likely receive between 25-30% in May, according to documents recently filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The company also said it will not make an interest payment of $11.8 million that was due on the first of this month.

Per CBL Properties:

We had a net loss for the three months ended March 31, 2020 of $139.3 million compared to a net loss for the three months ended March 31, 2019 of $46.8 million. We recorded a net loss attributable to common shareholders for the three months ended March 31,2020 of $133.9 million compared to a net loss for the three months ended March 31, 2019 of $50.2 million. Significant items that affected the comparability between the periods include litigation settlement expense of $88.2 million and gain on extinguishment of debt of $71.7 million in the three months ended March 31, 2019 and loss on impairment that is $108.8 million higher in the three months ended March 31, 2020 as compared to the prior year period. Additionally, the operating results of our Properties declined further during the three months ended March 31, 2020 due to the ongoing challenges in the retail environment that resulted in store closures and rental reductions for tenants with high occupancy costs, including tenants that declared bankruptcy in 2019 and 2020. Also, the majority of our portfolio closed during March due to government mandates related to the impact of COVID-19.

The mall was having financial issues prior to the pandemic. In January of this year, McLean County’s Board of Reviews lowered the assessed value, meaning CBL properties will pay less in taxes. It also lost four of its five anchor stores, leaving Kohl’s the only store still standing.

Eastland Mall reopened to the public on June 1.

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