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Kimco Founder, Martin Kimmel, Dies

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With a handshake, Mr. Kimmel and his friend Milton Cooper started the Kimco Realty Corporation in 1960. Until the corporation went public 30 years later, the partners never saw a need to formalize their business relationship, Mr. Cooper said Wednesday.

Starting with a “mundane pedestrian strip” on Coral Way in Miami with a Zayre discount store and two other stores, Mr. Cooper said, the company has built a portfolio that now includes about 1,900 properties in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Chile and Brazil — approximately 1,100 of them strip shopping centers. The value of the common stock of Kimco, based in New Hyde Park, N.Y., was $286 million in 1991; today it is about $10.2 billion.

With that first shopping strip under construction, “Cooper and Kimmel quickly learned the tricks of the local real estate game,” a 1998 article in Institutional Investor magazine said. “Kimmel would follow utility trucks to find out where new power lines were being laid,” an early sign of new residential development.

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Elaine Misonzhnik

Senior associate editor Elaine Misonzhnik has been writing for National Real Estate Investor since June 2006 and has covered commercial real estate for more than 12 years. She first became...
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