For the past year, the retail real estate industry has been waiting with bated breath for some kind of resolution on the fate of General Growth Properties, the giant mall REIT that took on too much debt at precisely the wrong time. Now that the firm has finally entered bankruptcy proceedings, we've assembled some key facts and quotes from industry insiders to give you a sense of how the GGP saga is likely to unfold.

  1. Number of years in operation: 55

  2. Number of years as a REIT: 16

  3. “I think the bankruptcy means very little in terms of market conditions because it is a unique situation relative to their capital structure.”
    Stephen Sterrett, Simon Property Group

  4. “This will clearly bring home the fact that if you have large loans coming due, your ability to refinance is practically nonexistent.”
    Steve Ifshin, DLC Management Corp.

  5. U.S. GLA owned: 182 million square feet

  6. “If GGP was forced to liquidate, that would end up being a huge weight on commercial real estate values.”
    Joel Bloomer, Morningstar

  7. Number of properties owned: 200 plus

  8. Number of properties in bankruptcy: 166

  9. Retail portfolio occupancy at year-end 2008: 92.5 percent

  10. Net operating income at year-end 2008: $2.6 billion

  11. “Lenders might be more lenient with them because they believe in the quality of the real estate they own.”
    Bernard Haddigan, Marcus & Millichap Real Estate Investment Services

  12. “It could certainly be a catalyst for a bit of consolidation in the REIT space.”
    Jason Lail, SNL Financial LC

  13. Total assets: $29.6 billion

  14. Total debt: $27.3 billion

  15. “Who would finance a [GGP acquisition]? The buy of a huge portfolio is partly how GGP got into this trouble in the first place.”
    Jon Southard, Torto Wheaton Research

  16. “I do not believe that GGP will be liquidated — there's no benefit to anybody.”
    Sam Zell, Equity Group Investments, LLC

  17. Closing stock price on the last day of trading: $1.05 per share

  18. Number of employees as of February 2009: 3,500

  19. “In order to reorganize, it's very likely they'll have to engage in the disposition of some of their assets.”
    Sam Chandan, Real Estate Economics LLC

  20. “I think just given the number of different creditors GGP has, it's very difficult to organize a solution that would allow GGP to continue to exist in its current form.”
    Suzanne Mulvee, Property & Portfolio Research

  21. CMBS exposure: 98 loans totaling more than $195 billion

  22. “It behooves them to try to restructure quickly and reorganize as fast as they can. I don't know how they are going to do that because credit markets are virtually nonexistent.”
    Ross Glickman, Urban Retail Properties

Sources: General Growth Properties press releases; Securities & Exchange Commission filings; Morningstar; Realpoint LLC; SNL Financial LC