Privately-held shopping center developer Combined Properties, Inc. is teaming up with asset manager Heitman to purchase up to $200 million worth of shopping centers in the Washington, D.C. and Southern California metropolitan areas. The joint venture fund, which will be leveraged by up to 65 percent, will focus on stabilized centers and centers with upside potential with GLA greater than 75,000 square feet.

“We love grocery-anchored centers, but we are more focused on the quality of the real estate than on the size or the configuration, so we are very, very flexible in the right locations — which for us means urban and infill,” says Combined president Katherine Roberson.

The fund, which closed on June 29, has the potential to acquire from six to eight properties, Roberson says. Combined has considered doing a larger venture, but because Washington, D.C., and Southern California tend to be extremely competitive markets, the firm wanted to deploy the money as soon as possible. Combined will handle the day-to-day asset management of the purchased portfolio and will retain a 20 percent interest in the venture, while Heitman will retain an 80 percent stake.

Combined has already seeded its first property to the fund: the 142,500-square-foot Charles County Plaza, a recently renovated shopping center in Waldorf, Md.