Shopping Centers Today International

MAR 2016

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

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a traditional fuel provider; we are a great provider of terrific food that [also] hap- pens to sell gas." Still based in the town that in- s p i r e d i t s n a m e , W a w a e m p l o y s 26,000. Though the company is pri- vately held, 40 percent of its work- ers participate in the employee stock ownership plan, hence the prolifera- tion of Wawa associates wearing name tags proclaiming, "Proudly Associate Owned," at their 24-hour, 365-days- per-year operations. "The point is that our people have a deeper connection and relationship with their customers than most retail- ers," said Lori Bruce, Wawa's public- relations manager, who points to the chain's 1.3 million followers on Face- book. "They share stories. The other day there was a post from a family so grateful for an associate who cheered on their son for having won a hockey game the day before." Each Wawa store occupies roughly 6,000 square feet on roughly an acre, to give customers the ability to get in and out quickly. An ideal site, Poplawski says, is the corner of two main roads with a daily traffic volume of about 25,000 motor vehicles and a mix of daytime workers and nighttime residents. The company invests about $5 million per site and seeks long-term leases of 10 or 20 years initially, with options thereafter, he says. From Wawa's roots outside Phila- delphia, Wawa ventured into New Jer- sey in 1968 and into Delaware in 1969. Now there are Wawa stores also in Maryland, Virginia and Florida. "We've now got over 80 stores in Florida, and that's just since July 2012," said Poplawski. "We plan to grow to over 300 locations in Florida." Wawa's rapid success in the Sunshine State has been impressive, according to Justin Greider, JLL's vice president of retail brokerage in Florida. "They really don't market themselves as a gas station, despite the fact that they have a huge gas station sitting in front of each of their stores," said Greider. "They really focus their marketing here on attracting consum- ers to come inside and get their coffee, their sandwich and their donut, those kinds of things." Beyond Florida, Wawa has opened several venues in northern New Jersey over the past year or so, and the com- pany has roughly 60 more waiting to be approved or built in that same region, Poplawski says. The company says it will continue to concentrate its expansion efforts in these existing regions for the time being. S C T r e T a i l i n g T o d a y M a r c h 2 0 1 6 / S C T 31 800-875-6575 • ROB MURPHY Senior Leasing Professional Congratulations to Rob Murphy, Senior Leasing Professional, our 2015 Top Leasing Producer. Rob executed 34 new leases for over 128,700 square feet! Our leasing team is dedicated to creating great grocery-anchored shopping experiences across our growing por tfolio. Contact leasing @ to learn more. PHILLIPS EDISON & COMPANY Names 2015 Leasing Professional of the Year 714.309.4548 Immediate Results Our Mailings Corral Qualified Leasing Calls Fast!

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