By Thomas Reichenauer
The incorporation of this new market uncertainty into the leasing strategies of outlet and shopping centers has become a necessity. As a result, ROS Retail Outlet Shopping is pursuing a glocal – think globally, act locally – leasing approach, using a mix of established international brands with local brands and the use of pop-up stores.
Pop-up stores, or short-term retail, create win-win-situations for brands and landlords. New brands, in particular, gain retail experience and have the chance to grow their customer bases. Landlords are able to use them as short-term solutions for vacancies, as integral parts of leasing strategies to drive the traffic of new customer profiles, as marketing tools, or to attract tourists.
At Designer Outlet Croatia, which opened in June last year, we have deliberately decided to pursue this approach and give newcomers a chance. We have opened two pop-up stores featuring typical Croatian brands, such as Xenia Design, Avantgarde, and Hippy Garden, the provocative women’s wear brand. Another brand worth mentioning is Croata, which offers an exclusive accessories collection for men and women and whose brand heritage goes back to the birthplace of the tie in Croatia.
A designer collaboration during a weekend event at Designer Outlet Warszawa last year with Lidia Kalita, a well-known Polish fashion designer must also be highlighted. Her pop-up store presence included blogger days and provided us with great social media coverage.
In Germany, we have just opened a Glücksstern store at City Outlet Geislingen, thereby affording this newcomer outlet presence. Glücksstern is a new upmarket women’s brand with a focus on pants and casual fashion. Internet pure players, such as Amazon, Alibaba, and Zalando, have also begun using “brick-and-mortar” pop-up stores.
On a final note: The use of pop-up stores, temporary leases, and local leases as deliberate parts of outlets or shopping center concepts provide great opportunities for us to improve the shopping experience, drive new traffic, and potentially change the image of centers long-term, particularly for older centers with no expansion potential.