Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. LP (KKR), in partnership with YTC Pacific, have invested $196 million in Yorktown Center. This marks the first retail real estate investment in the U.S. by KKR's newly formed dedicated real estate group.

Located approximately 20 miles west of downtown Chicago, Yorktown is a 1.5 million-sq.-ft. super-regional mall with over 150 stores sitting on 130 acres. With over $280 million in annual revenues, Yorktown has many recognized national retailers, including The Capital Grille Restaurant, Victoria’s Secret, American Eagle Outfitters, Gap, AMC Theatres, Forever 21 and department store chains JC Penney, Carson Pirie Scott and Von Maur.

“This is an investment in Yorktown and the Lombard community,” Ralph Rosenberg, a member of KKR and head of the firm’s real estate group, said in a statement. “Through a combination of proactive management, a focus on leasing, cosmetic and other improvements, we aim to add value to the center with the hope of offering a more pleasant and practical shopping experience for residents.”

YTC Pacific, a partnership between Pacific Retail Capital Partners, Collarmelle Partners and Peter Fair (Continuum Partners), will manage the day-to-day operations of Yorktown and the group is also a co-investor in the transaction. In addition to focusing on optimizing the retail selection, near-term plans include upgrading the center’s lighting, signage, food court and entrances.

Yorktown has been under private ownership since it opened in 1968, serving an affluent audience of more than 900,000 residents with an average household income of nearly $109,000. More than 10 million shoppers visit Yorktown each year.