Rouse Properties, Inc. (NYSE: RSE), a national owner and operator of enclosed regional malls, today announced that it closed on a new $68.0 million mortgage loan secured by Valley Hills Mall. The CMBS non-recourse loan bears interest at a fixed rate of 4.47% and matures in ten years. Net proceeds to the Company after related closing and defeasance costs were approximately $15.0 million. This asset was previously financed with a $51.4 million mortgage loan at an interest rate of 4.73% and with a maturity of March, 2016. “The refinancing of Valley Hills Mall is our sixth individual mall financing completed since our formation in early 2012. Lenders continue to respond positively to our leasing and asset reinvestment strategy, as we continue to unlock the inherent value that exists throughout our portfolio” said John Wain, chief financial officer of Rouse Properties. “With this transaction, we continue to execute on our ongoing refinancing strategy. Since our formation, our refinancings have not only extended our maturity ladder and reduced interest rates, but have resulted in aggregate net proceeds to the Company of approximately $62 million.” Valley Hills Mall is located in Hickory, North Carolina and is the only enclosed mall within a 40-mile radius. The mall is the dominant shopping center along the region’s main retail corridor off US Highway 70 near the intersection of I-40 and US-321, serving a 400,000 person trade area. Built in 1978 and remodeled in 2001, the 933,668 square foot enclosed mall is anchored by Belk, Dillard’s, JC Penney and Sears. The merchandising mix includes national tenants such as American Eagle Outfitters, Bath and Body Works, Buckle, Journeys, Justice and Victoria’s Secret. Hickory is the primary city within the Hickory-Lenoir-Morganton Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) in western North Carolina, and boasts a rich manufacturing history, producing approximately 60% of the furniture in the United States. In recent years, manufacturers of high tech cabling and data processing centers have established large presences in the market, making it a global leader in fiber optic cable manufacturing. Google recently announced a $600 million expansion to its data center in the Valley Hills market, and Apple completed construction in 2011 of a $1 billion data center just south of the mall.