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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Meinl Lands Seeks $1.9Bln in Share Sale

VIENNA -- Meinl European Land, an Austrian company that bought four shopping malls in Moscow last year, plans to raise as much as $1.9 billion in a share sale to finance real estate projects in Central and Eastern Europe.

Meinl Land, based in Vienna, will sell 75 million new shares priced at $25.50 each through Feb. 9, the company said Monday on its web site. The proceeds will be used to build malls in Poland, Russia, Bulgaria and Romania, spokesman Francis Lustig said Monday.

The company, which raised about $2.2 billion from two share sales last year, is building and buying property in Eastern Europe to take advantage of yields that are higher than in Western Europe. Economic growth in the region is creating demand for office and retail space, boosting returns.

"If there is a need for more money for our projects, we will come back to the market,'' Lustig said. "It also depends on the interest of investors in this sale."

The company has invested about 42 percent of its total assets in Russia, followed by Poland with 22 percent and 13 percent it has spent in Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic. Meinl Land has a market value of $5.6 billion.