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In Play Today: Brookfield on the hunt for North American real estate M&A deals

S&P Global Market Intelligence presents In Play Today, a periodic summary of potential deal activity in the sector, including rumored transactions and shareholder activism. This summary is based on information obtained by S&P Global Market Intelligence and may not be inclusive of all potential deal activity. Send comments and news leads to Pam.Rosacia@SPGlobal.com.

In play

* Brookfield Asset Management Inc. and its affiliates appear to be in active pursuit of M&A deals in the North American real estate market. The Canada-based asset manager's publicly listed vehicle, Brookfield Property Partners LP, reportedly made an unsolicited buyout offer of up to $14.8 billion for regional mall real estate investment trust GGP Inc. GGP rejected the bid, but the parties are said to be continuing their negotiations. The regional mall landlord had earlier said it decided to stay the course upon completion of its strategic review launched in the first half of 2017.

* Brookfield Asset Management was also rumored to be in discussions to acquire Forest City Realty Trust Inc. The diversified real estate investment trust said it is nearing the end of its strategic review, which it launched in September 2017 following pressure from an activist investor to explore a possible sale or merger.

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* Further, Brookfield Asset Management's residential arm is said to be in talks to acquire San Diego real estate developer OliverMcMillan.

* Macerich Co. shareholder Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan Board reportedly held talks with other investors to take the regional mall landlord private. Macerich, however, denied such talks and called the report "not accurate."

* Brookdale Senior Living Inc. cast aside a $9-per-share cash offer from a potential acquirer, capping off its strategic review first announced in February 2017. A potential sale was complicated by the fact that Brookdale would have to obtain consent from major landlords, including Ventas Inc. and Welltower Inc., company executives said on an earnings call. The company had been rumored to be in talks for a potential takeover by Blackstone Group LP, Ventas and Zhonghong Zhuoye Group Co. Ltd.

* VICI Properties Inc. rejected a $19.50-per-share unsolicited buyout offer from fellow casino REIT MGM Growth Properties. VICI, which just completed its IPO, said at the time that operating as a stand-alone company will deliver "significantly superior" results for its stockholders.

Strategic steps

* Seniors-housing REIT New Senior Investment Group Inc. is weighing "a full range" of strategic alternatives to boost shareholder value. CEO Susan Givens said on an earnings call that the measures the company has taken to date, including share buybacks and the sale of select assets, have not helped its stock performance.

* Wheeler Real Estate Investment Trust Inc. launched a strategic review following the removal of Jon Wheeler as the company's chairman, president and CEO amid shareholder pressure. The grocery-anchored shopping center landlord, which had been pressed by shareholders to explore a possible sale and other strategic alternatives, hired KeyBanc Capital Markets as its financial adviser in the review.