Picking an Intelligent Growth and Income PlayBack in November I recommended ROIC shares at $12.43. Since then, they have increased by more than 20%. Add in the dividend (4%), and you get a REIT that has returned more than 24% (since Nov. 28, 2012).
The first-quarter results were exceptional. Here's what CEO Stuart Tanz had to say:
"We are pleased to report that the company is off to a strong start in 2013. We are continuing to successfully execute our business plan of broadening our portfolio through acquiring quality, grocery-anchored shopping centers and quickly enhancing value through our proactive hands on management. Additionally, we are continuing to enhance our strong financial position."With respect to ROIC's balance sheet, the company recently retired more than 58% of its existing warrants, and that has provided positive news for investors. I view the recent warrant activity as an important endorsement of the company's accomplishments to date as well as its future growth prospects. With the warrants that have been exercised thus far, ROIC has received approximately $157 million of proceeds to invest. Also for the first quarter, ROIC had $24.4 million in total revenues, as compared to $16.6 million in total revenues for the first quarter of 2012.
Additionally, the company had net income of $2.3 million for the first quarter of 2013 as compared to net income of $1.1 million for the first quarter of 2012. Funds from operations (or FFO) for the first quarter was $11.5 million as compared to $8.4 million in FFO a year ago.
Nice Dividend PolicyROIC has a total of 47 shopping centers encompassing more than 5 million square feet diversified across the West Coast. Eighteen of the 47 properties (or 35% of total GLA) is located in Southern California. Twelve shopping centers are located in the Northern California region (representing 25% of our total GLA). Nine properties (representing 18% of total GLA) are located in Portland, Oregon, and 22% of GLA is in the Seattle market where ROIC owns eight shopping centers. ROIC's occupancy is now 93.4%, up 100 basis points from a year ago. The portfolio is becoming increasingly more diversified as three leading grocery chains -- Safeway ( SWY), Albertson's, and Kroger ( KRO) -- account for about 18.5% of leased space.
"Our focus is really acquiring off-market unique opportunities, where we can acquire exceptional shopping centers at more reasonable terms and quickly add value. So we're going to keep to our philosophy and our knitting, in terms of how we've acquired as we've done in the past."At the time of publication, Thomas had no positions in securities mentioned. Follow @swan_investor This article is commentary by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.