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J.C. Penney in Talks to Be Bought by Simon Property, Brookfield

Simon Property and Brookfield are negotiating to buy retailer J.C. Penney, a media report says.
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Mall owners Simon Property Group  (SPG) - Get Simon Property Group Inc. Report and Brookfield Property Partners  (BPY) - Get Brookfield Property Partners L.P. Report are reportedly negotiating to purchase bankrupt department-store chain J.C. Penney  (JCP) - Get J. C. Penney Company, Inc. Report.

Authentic Brands, which owns more than 50 consumer brands, might join the two real estate companies in their bid, knowledgeable sources told Bloomberg.

Simon is the biggest mall owner in the country, and Brookfield, a unit of Brookfield Asset Management  (BAM) - Get Brookfield Asset Management Inc. Report, is No. 2. J.C. Penney is an important occupant in numerous malls they own. So they want to make sure they don’t get stiffed on rent.

J.C. Penney last month filed for protection from creditors under Chapter 11 of federal bankruptcy and is hurriedly working to finalize a business plan by the July 14 deadline, Bloomberg reports. After that, it could run out of cash to finance its reorganization.

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Authentic joined with Simon and Brookfield earlier this year to purchase teen clothing chain Forever 21 out of bankruptcy. It too had a presence at some Simon and Brookfield malls.

In addition, Authentic and Simon also are talking to apparel retailer Brooks Brothers about a buyout as part of a potential bankruptcy filing by that company, Bloomberg reports.

Authentic owns Aeropostale after combining with Simon and Brookfield to purchase it out of bankruptcy in 2016.

Shares of Simon Property, Indianapolis, at last check traded at $75.50, down 0.63%. The stock has slid 16% over the past three months.

Brookfield Property Partners shares at last check traded little changed at $11.14. The stock of the Hamilton, Bermuda, company has dropped 18% over the past three months.