Quarterly report pursuant to Section 13 or 15(d)

COVID-19 Pandemic (Notes)

COVID-19 Pandemic (Notes)
3 Months Ended
Mar. 31, 2020
Risks and Uncertainties [Abstract]  
COVID-19 Pandemic COVID-19 Pandemic

The current novel coronavirus (“COVID-19”) pandemic has had, and likely will continue to have, repercussions across local, national and global economies and financial markets. COVID-19 has impacted all states where our tenants operate their businesses or where our properties are located and measures taken to prevent or remediate COVID-19, including “shelter-in place” or “stay-at-home” orders or other quarantine mandates issued by local, state or federal authorities, have had an adverse effect on our business and the businesses of our tenants. The full extent of the adverse impact on, among other things, our results of operations, liquidity (including our ability to access capital markets), the possibility of future impairments of long-lived assets or our investments in unconsolidated joint ventures, our compliance with debt covenants, our ability to renew and re-lease our leased space, the outlook for the retail environment, potential bankruptcies or other store closings and our ability to develop, acquire, dispose or lease properties for our portfolio, is unknown and will depend on future developments, which are highly uncertain and cannot be predicted. Our results of operations, liquidity and cash flows could be materially affected.

While our outlet centers have remained open, retailers began closing their stores in our outlet centers in mid-March and by April 6, 2020, substantially all of the stores in our portfolio were closed as a result of mandates by order of local and state authorities. It remains unclear when mandates will be lifted completely or eased in additional locations.

A number of our tenants have requested rent deferrals, rent abatements or other types of rent relief during this pandemic. As a response, in late March 2020, we offered all tenants in our consolidated portfolio the option to defer 100% of April and May rents interest free, payable in equal installments due in January and February of 2021. The extent of tenant requests and actions and the impact to our results of operations and cash flows is uncertain and cannot be predicted at this time.

Also in March 2020, to increase liquidity, preserve financial flexibility and help ensure that we are able to meet our obligations for a sustained period of time until there is more clarity regarding the impact of the pandemic, we drew down substantially all of the available capacity under our $600.0 million unsecured lines of credit. We have also taken steps to reduce future cash outflows, including the reduction or deferral of certain operating and general and administrative expenses, as well as the deferral of the Nashville project and certain other planned capital expenditures. We intend to pay the dividend that was declared in January as scheduled on May 15, 2020. Going forward, given the current uncertainty related to the pandemic’s near and potential long-term impact, the Company’s Board of Directors will temporarily suspend dividend distributions to conserve approximately $35.0 million in cash per quarter and preserve our balance sheet strength and flexibility. The Board will continue to evaluate the potential for future dividend distributions on a quarterly basis. We expect to remain in compliance with REIT taxable income distribution requirements for the 2020 tax year.