We very much appreciate your March 22 article on our mortgage and real estate investing ("TIAA-CREF pulls several major properties off auction block," page 39). However, it does contain several factual errors I am obliged to correct for your readers.
* TIAA's goal is NOT "to get out of the mall business in the U.S." We are simply reducing the number of malls we own directly. TIAA remains one of the largest retail mall investors in the U.S. We invested $1.7 billion in retail malls during 1998 alone; retail now represents 27% of our $27 billion mortgage and real estate portfolio.
* TIAA did NOT sell eight malls to the Rouse Co. Our partner was the Rouse Co.; together we sold eight malls to other parties.
* Mall of America is NOT TIAA's "sole U.S. mall holding." We have others.
* We did NOT "purchase Las Colinas in 1998." Rather, we purchased the Millennium Office Center, an award-winning office building across the street from Williams Square. TIAA has been an investor in Las Colinas Land LP since 1989.
Joseph W. Luik
senior managing director
TIAA Mortgage and Real Estate