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>> It would be the biggest takeover of an Australian company on record. French owned Unibail-Rodamco agreeing to buy shopping mall owner on Westfield Corporation for $15.7 billion, creating the world second largest retail and real estate owner. Westfield executives argue the deal with Europe's leading commercial property landlord is an unique opportunity.
>> The combined group will have a 72 billion US dollar portfolio.>> Reuters' Maya in Paris says it comes at a time when retailers are trying to reinvent themselves.>> They are trying to fend off competition from ecommerce and websites such as Amazon as shoppers tend more and more to use websites and to buy physical goods online, rather than going to malls.
>> And they better keep up with rapid changes in consumer behavior, where malls are now increasingly used as a place to socialize. The pair have a similar strategy. Embracing more entertainment and eating in their shopping malls in order to draw in customers. The two also have very little geographical overlap.
Westfield owns and operates a $32 billion portfolio in the United States and United Kingdom. Whereas, Unibail has a very limited presence in both countries.>> Unibail, with this deal, it will extend it's reach to other regions and it will try to breach the business, for example, with trying to bring some US brands to Europe to it's malls, to it's European malls.
Like it did with Victoria Secret earlier this year.>> Shares in Unibail Rodamco have fallen since the proposal was made public. With some analysts saying the deal looked expensive. It's expected to be finalized next year.