Shopping Centers Today

AUG 2015

Shopping Centers Today is the news magazine of the International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC)

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T H E C O M M O N A R E A A u g u s t 2 0 1 5 / S C T 12 Shopping centers have become the most popular places to eat in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, favored over stand- alone restaurants and main streets, according to a survey by CBRE. "The views of 22,000 consumers in 22 countries across EMEA [Europe, Middle East and Africa] showed that 41 percent preferred to eat in shopping centers, compared to 10 percent in restaurants and cafés on the high street, and 7 percent in retail parks," reads a summary of the report ac- companying the survey. What is more, a third of the respon- dents reported that they visit shopping centers for the sole purpose of dining. "Four out of ten then went on to shop even if their reason for visiting the center was just to eat or drink," according to the summary. Ninety percent of those surveyed in the United Arab Emir- ates said the availability of food and drink was important at malls, while 57 percent of the respondents in that same country said they ended up shopping after dining. In the U.K., 65 percent listed the availability of food and bever- ages as important, with 47 percent saying they go on to shop afterwards."It is clear that the presence of a compel- ling food and beverage offer is key to driving footfall and revenue to a shopping center," said Andrew Phipps, CBRE's head of EMEA retail research and consulting, in a press release. "The days have gone when a limited fast food offer or a drab food court was sufficient reason to visit. Now they are a draw themselves and the lure of a well-conceived and excellently delivered eating and drinking experience is what really gets consumers excited." S C T Malls are top destinations for dining: Survey Chinese plastic More shopping centers are encouraging their retailers to accept UnionPay, Chinaís version of Visa, to better serve an expected surge in Chinese tourists. Tanger Factory Outlets is the latest to agree to accept UnionPay, at 12 of its properties. The firm con- tinues to see an increase in shoppers from China, Korea and Japan at key centers in its portfolio, says Steven B. Tanger, president and CEO. Withered branches Greek banks are opening fewer branches in light of the countryís ongoing economic woes. The European Central Bank said in a report that Greek bank branches totaled 2,688 at the end of 2014, from 3,109 in 2013 and 4,008 in 2010. Itís a Europe- wide trend. The number of bank branches continued falling in most EU member- states ó to 204,000 in 2014, from 211,000 in 2013. Men in yoga pants Men are yogawear chain Lululemonís fastest grow- ing customer group, and the retailer is taking steps to further serve them and the women who buy clothes for them, executives say. "Our menís business delivered a 19 percent comp in the first quarter," said CEO Lau- rent Potdevin. Lululemon has expanded the amount of merchandise targeted to men, especially sweatpants. He said Lululemon is experimenting with stand- alone menís stores and increasing square footage dedicated to men at exist- ing Lululemon stores. W H I T E L Y s H o p p I n g c E n T r E , f a r E H a m , Passing the reins Uruguayís oldest mall, the 30-year-old Montevideo Shopping, saw the retire- ment of its first (and thus far its only) general manager, Gastón Martín Valdés, who is 84. Developer Luis Lecueder offered Martín the opportunity to work for six months in the planning of the center ó without salary, but with the promise that he would become the centerís manager if it opened.

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