Along with street shops, malls are unsurprisingly the most common formats for expansion. Credit: Citycon

Brands are continuing to expand

The seventh edition of “How Active Are Retailers Globally?” prepared by CBRE, looks at the target markets for over 150 international brands based in the Americas, Asia Pacific, and the Europe, Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) region.

In 2016, CBRE expects to see the global economic recovery continue at a steady pace, with modestly improving growth in many mature markets. However, there are potential headwinds on the horizon: rising interest rates in the U.S., a depreciation of the Chinese Yuan, and a financial crisis in one or more emerging markets. Within this setting, albeit cautiously, retailers continue to expand their physical store networks despite the ongoing challenges of increasing costs, unsteady economies in some markets and the challenges and opportunities that come with technology.

 Core Western Europe still on retailers’ agenda

Retailers are targeting a wide and diverse range of markets in 2016, with core Western Europe at the top of the agenda. Despite worries about the Chinese and U.S. economies, retailers still see potential in these markets and are looking to make inroads there in the coming year. Brands are also looking farther afield this year to try to gain market share, with markets such as Colombia, Egypt, and the Philippines being targeted.

Cautiously optimistic seems to be the trend, with the vast majority of retailers (67%) looking to open no more than 20 stores this year. However, 17% have large scale ambitions, with more than 40 stores on the radar for 2016. This tends to be driven largely by North American or European brands. The two biggest risk factors for brands this year are escalating rental and operating costs and unclear economic prospects. Lack of quality space was also significant, especially for F&B retailers. Brands from Asia Pacific were particularly concerned about changes in consumer behavior.

 The most popular formats

Street shops and shopping malls are unsurprisingly the most common formats for expansion. Interestingly, travel hubs are also being targeted by a fifth of brands from the Americas and EMEA as an emerging format. 83% of brands felt that the growth in online would not directly impact their need for physical stores in 2016, although the most commonly quoted reason for those who suggested it was changes in consumer behavior. A small proportion of retailers also felt that they would be able to generate the same level of sales from fewer stores or that their online capability was such that they needed fewer physical stores.

Over half of the brands surveyed felt that shorter leases and flexible break/renewal options were particularly important characteristics. Provision of rent to online sales was only important to 7% of brands, turnover rent clauses are key for Asia Pacific brands, while American brands consider signage a more relevant issue.

Sign up for our ACROSS Newsletter. Subscribe to ACROSS Magazine.

Retail MORE

Decentralization and the future of retail in German city centers

As if retailers in German city centers have not had enough to contend with in recent years–primarily driven by growing competition from online retailers–now they are also confronted with even bigger economic problems due to the Corona pandemic and the associated restrictions and closures. A continuous analysis of visitor development by GfK shows what has actually happened since the start of the pandemic, who the losers and even bigger losers of the pandemic are, and what the future holds.

Going Forward! Europe’s food retail sector in the corona-year 2020: the storm of the century

Europe's food retailers are being put to the test by the eco- nomic consequences of the natural disaster Covid-19. This is a very special kind of weather situation. While non-food retailers and the food service industry are in sheer despair in the face of the calm caused by government-imposed lockdowns, the "system-relevant" food retail sector has been confronted with a veritable storm tide since the sec- ond quarter of 2020.

Food retailers in their own words

Industry leaders told us about the sales impact Corona had on their business in 2020. They also explain what fundamental changes in location, sales, and marketing strategy they are planning for 2021/2022 in response to the widespread economic impact of the pandemic.

Allowing young talents to completely rethink retail

Union Investment and Sierra Germany launched their latest edition of First Store by Alexa–a campaign by Berlin’s well-known shopping center Alexa. Ralf Schaffuss, Head of Retail Asset Management of owner Union Investment Real Estate, and Jens Horeis, General Manager of Center Management company Sierra Germany, talk about their latest innovation of the competition.

A closer look at Belgian retail parks

Retail parks have been the best performing and most resilient retail format in Belgium prior to and throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, resulting in a slight compression in yields by 25bps since the beginning of the year according to new research by CBRE commissioned by Mitiska REIM.

25 new brands came to the Czech market in 2020

Despite the coronavirus crisis, this is one brand more than 2019, according to a market survey by Cushman & Wakefield.