Collateral call: American Dream lenders may get part of Triple Five’s other megamalls — here’s what that means

Move, obviously related to pandemic-caused drop in revenue, may not be as bad as it sounds

The Financial Times reported the lenders behind the American Dream mall in the Meadowlands will soon be taking a 49% stake in the two other megamalls owned and operated by developer Triple Five.

The stake in the other malls — Mall of America in Minneapolis and the West Edmonton Mall in Alberta — was just as collateral when taking $1.2 billion in loans for the American Dream project.

The move has long been expected — and is not expected to result in Triple Five losing the assets.

Kurt Hagen, senior vice president of development for Triple Five, told Minnesota officials earlier this month that the company was having a significant cash crisis due to the economic downturn caused by the pandemic.

Hagen also said the collateral serves as only an indirect ownership interest.

“It simply means that, once we return to profitability, 49% of those profits would go to the American Dream lenders until such time as that collateral is released,” Hagen said.

The parts of the American Dream mall that have opened are doing well, especially on weekends. But not enough retail stores — and limited capacity — has crushed any chances of making significant retail work.

There is some hope moving forward. Sea Life Aquarium and Legoland Discovery Center are expected to open May 4.