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Empresas Fonalledas Upbeat After Tough Year

Plaza del Caribe celebrates its 10th anniversary with 2001 sales surpassing $180 million, Plaza Las Americas 2001 sales up 7.1%,


March 21, 2002
Copyright © 2002 CARIBBEAN BUSINESS. All Rights Reserved.

Empresas Fonalledas has reason to celebrate as Plaza Las Americas and Plaza del Caribe–both under its management–have done well despite many negative sales predictions for 2001.

Despite the gloomy forecasts, Plaza Las Americas–Puerto Rico’s No. 1 mall–reported a 7.1% increase in sales for fiscal year (FY) 2001 and a 4.5% increase in sales for December 2001 compared to December 2000.

Meanwhile, Plaza del Caribe, the fifth largest shopping mall in Puerto Rico, is celebrating 10 years of high occupancy and positive sales, which broke the $180 million mark in FY 2001.

Plaza del Caribe has registered 98.5% occupancy for the past five years, said General Manager Arturo Valdejully. Occupancy at local malls, which fluctuates between 90% and 100%, is more than the U.S. mainland average of 87% to 89%. Valdejully added that the mall’s $450 sales-per-square-foot average is 13% greater than the U.S. mainland average.

The sales figures are apparently drawing in tenants. "Recently, we had a visit from Bostonian Clarks and from XX Me. Both are interested in becoming tenants," he said. J.C. Penney, Sears, and Capri anchor the 683,000-square-foot mall.

According to Valdejully, Plaza del Caribe has been a positive corporate citizen for Ponce, creating 1,500 full-time and 2,500 temporary jobs and generating $78 million in payroll, property taxes, and more.

Sales figures for at both malls are expected to be better in FY 2002 than they were in FY 2001, as economists point to a recovering economy, said Empresas Fonalledas’ Communications Director Lorraine Vissepo.

This Caribbean Business article appears courtesy of Casiano Communications.
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