Thursday, March 6, 2008

EastGroup Properties Announces Dividend Increase

JACKSON, MS, March 6, 2008– EastGroup Properties (NYSE-EGP) announced today that its Board of Directors approved a 4.0% increase in its quarterly dividend, raising it to $.52 per share from $.50 per share.

This is the sixteenth consecutive year of dividend increases. The dividend is payable on March 31, 2008 to shareholders of record of Common Stock on March 21, 2008. This dividend is the 113th consecutive quarterly distribution to EastGroup's shareholders and represents an annualized dividend rate of $2.08 per share.

EastGroup also announced that its Board of Directors declared a quarterly dividend of $.4969 per share payable on April 15, 2008 to shareholders of record of Series D Preferred Stock on March 31, 2008.

EastGroup Properties, Inc. is a self-administered equity real estate investment trust focused on the development, acquisition, and operation of industrial properties in major Sunbelt markets throughout the United States with a special emphasis in the states of Florida, Texas, California and Arizona.
Its strategy for growth is based on its property portfolio orientation toward premier business distribution facilities clustered near major transportation features. EastGroup's portfolio currently includes 23.8 million square feet with an additional 2.2 million square feet of properties under development.

David H. Hoster II, President and Chief Executive Officer
N. Keith McKey, Chief Financial Officer
(601) 354-3555

EastGroup Properties, Inc. press releases are available at
P.O. Box 22728, Jackson, MS 39225-2728
Telephone: 601/354-3555 Fax: 601/352-1441

Arbor Promotes Joseph Donovan to Senior Vice President, Production Management

UNIONDALE, NY (March 6, 2008) - Arbor Commercial Mortgage, LLC (“Arbor”) announces the promotion of Joseph Donovan (photo top right) to Senior Vice President, Production Management. He previously held the title of Vice President, Production Management.

In his new role, Mr. Donovan will continue to oversee the day-to-day operations of the Company’s Fannie Mae, FHA/Ginnie Mae and CMBS production unit. Additionally, Mr. Donovan will be responsible for ensuring operational conformity with all aspects of investor compliance.

Mr. Donovan joined Arbor in 1993. Prior to Arbor, Mr. Donovan worked for the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (“FDIC”) and Commonwealth Mortgage Company.

Mr. Donovan earned his Bachelor of Arts degree from Canisius College where he was awarded the Lester J. Suess Scholarship. He has previously served as a board member of the National Multi Housing Council. He resides in Canton, MA.

Arbor Commercial Mortgage, LLC, and Arbor Realty Trust, Inc., have extensive experience in mortgage origination, servicing and securitization and have built a reputation for service, quality and flexibility. Arbor’s seasoned management team specializes in debt and equity financing for multifamily, office, retail, hotel and various other commercial real estate properties. The company offers a broad array of financing options including Fannie Mae DUS®, FHA, CMBS, Bridge and Mezzanine products. Currently, Arbor services over $3 billion in loans. Arbor is a rated Standard & Poor’s third-party commercial loan and special servicer.

Arbor also manages Arbor Realty Trust, Inc., a real estate investment trust (REIT), formed to invest in real estate bridge and mezzanine loans, preferred equity investments and in limited cases, discounted mortgage notes and other real estate related assets. Arbor is headquartered in Uniondale, NY, and has full-service lending offices throughout the United States.

Ingrid Principe
Marketing Specialist
Arbor Commercial Mortgage, LLC 333 Earle Ovington Boulevard, Suite 900
Uniondale, NY 11553 Phone: 516-506-4298
Fax: 516-542-2555

St. Regis® Resort & Residences, Bal Harbour Celebrates Groundbreaking with VIP Ceremony

BAL HARBOUR, FL, Mar. 6, 2008--A VIP groundbreaking ceremony was held today for the luxurious St. Regis® Resort & Residences, Bal Harbour, on the site of the former Sheraton Bal Harbour. It is anticipated that the nine-acre complex of three all-glass towers will be completed in 2011.

The St. Regis® Resort & Residences, Bal Harbour is one of the largest developments of its kind in Florida and will include 268 ultra-luxury residences, 37 condo-hotel suites, 183 hotel rooms and 24 St. Regis Residence Club® residences. The groundbreaking ceremony was hosted by Sergio Rivera, president of real estate for Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. Jorge Perez of the Related Group and numerous Bal Harbour city officials also participated in the event.

“This is one of the most significant development projects in Florida. The end result will be one of the most luxurious mixed-use projects in the world featuring fractional ownership, whole ownership and 5-star hotel accommodations. We are extremely excited to reach this ceremonial milestone today and celebrate with all of our partners the future success of the St. Regis® Resort & Residences, Bal Harbour. I would especially like to thank Jorge Perez and The Related Group for their leadership with this project,” said Mr. Rivera.

The St. Regis® Resort & Residences, Bal Harbour is located on the former site of the historic Sheraton Bal Harbour, which was imploded late last year to make way for this project.

About St. Regis Hotels & Resorts
Combining timeless sophistication with modern luxury, the St. Regis brand is uncompromising in its commitment to excellence. Founded by John Jacob Astor with the landmark St. Regis Hotel, New York over a century ago, St. Regis is known for delivering an unrivaled dimension of luxury, bespoke service and refined elegance at the best addresses in the world. For more information on St. Regis Hotels & Resorts, please visit

About Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.
Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. is one of the leading hotel and leisure companies in the world with approximately 900 properties in more than managed properties. For more information, please visit

About The Related Group
Established in 1979, The Related Group is the nation's leading builder of luxury condominiums and one of the country's premier multi-family real estate development firms. Founded by Chairman and CEO Jorge M. Perez, The Related Group has built and managed more than 55,000 residential units throughout Florida. For more information, please visit

Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc.,, 1111 Westchester Ave. Phone: 914-640-8100. Fax: 914-696-1138

Wesley Homes Inc., WA's $52.245 Million Refunding Revenue Bonds Assigned 'BBB-'Rating

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--Standard & Poor's Ratings Services assigned its 'BBB-' long-term rating to the Washington State Housing Finance Commission's $52.245 million refunding revenue bonds issued for Wesley Homes Inc.

The rating reflects the successful completion and ramp-up of its second long-term care community in Auburn, Wash., high occupancy levels at its Des Moines facilities, solid excess margins and adjusted maximum annual debt service coverage (MADS), and a strong balance sheet. The outlook is stable.

"Wesley Homes reported a good operating margin in fiscal 2006 of 4.3% and a breakeven operating budget for 2008 based upon the successful fill-up at its new Lea Hills facility, and an excess margin of 10.6% in fiscal 2006," said Standard & Poor's credit analyst Keith Dickinson. "Its adjusted MADS coverage of 2.3x for fiscal 2006 is solid."

Offsetting credit factors include a large operating loss for the 11-month interim period (fiscal year end is Dec. 31) due to a $2 million write-off of letter of credit fees paid in 2005, and low unrestricted cash to debt for the rating at 24.4% for fiscal 2006 and 29.2% for the interim period, due to high long-term debt.

The Wesley Homes Inc. obligated group is made up of Wesley Homes, the group's sole corporate member; Wesley Homes Des Moines LLC, which owns and operates Wesley Homes Des Moines, a continuing care retirement community; Wesley Homes Lea Hill LLC, which owns and operates Wesley Homes Lea Hill, a planned retirement community; Wesley Homes Foundation, organized for charitable and education purposes to support Wesley Homes in its endeavors; and Wesley Homes Community Health Services, which provides nursing and other services to residents of Wesley Homes Des Moines and Lea Hill.

Media Contact:
Christopher Mortell , New York, (1) 212-438 3446
Analyst Contacts:
Keith I Dickinson, San Francisco (1) 415-371-5036
Geraldine Poon, San Francisco (1) 415-371-5078