Shopping Centers Today International

APR 2016

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

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The collectibles market is bigger than one might think, according to equity analyst David Magee, a managing direc- tor at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey in Atlanta. Collectibles shoppers are like those zealous sports fans who buy a range of items emblazoned with their teams' lo- gos. "They have such strong fan bases out there that it just makes sense that you can sell a lot of stuff that has a connection with those brands," said Magee. ThinkGeek has its own exclusive line of items through a production division it calls Geek Labs, which develops such merchandise as a talking Knight Rider– themed USB car charger, or gelatin molds inspired by the Doctor Who TV show. "There is a constant flow of prod- ucts that they are creating, and it is just really exciting," said Oria. Consumers today can readily access many sorts of products online, but if retailers can provide proprietary mer- chandise, it helps set them apart com- petitively, says Magee. "They are able to show something different in their stores, which will help to drive traffic," he said. The ThinkGeek acquisition means GameStop is now able to bundle this proprietary content with its own game products and create in-store ex- clusives. GameStop can take advantage of the opportunity to cross-sell, both in stores and online. The company al- ready had a wholesale relationship with ThinkGeek, carrying a selection of the latter's items in-store. Creating a dedicated ThinkGeek store was certainly a logical next step. To be sure, ThinkGeek had set up sales booths in the past at major events such as Comic Con, but this is its first actual store. "We thought a brick-and-mortar expression of everything they have done online to get their fan base excited was just a natural fit," said Oria. There was already a GameStop at the Florida Mall. "We knew that it was a good, high-traf- fic mall for us, and collectibles also sell well from that particular store," he said. "We had a lot of data that said that the opportunity was pretty prime there." GameStop is seeking opportuni- ties across the country to open more of these but has cited no details yet. The company does say that it will employ data from its customer-loyalty program of 32 million members to help identify potential markets. "You're going to see these products throughout the GameStop chain," said Oria. "Between that and growing [Think- Geek's] dot-com business and the poten- tial for these brick-and-mortar stores, we are just really excited about welcoming them into the family here." SCT r e T a i l i n g T o d a y Los AngeLes \\ WAshington, D.C. \\ BALtimore \\ PhiLADeLPhiA \\ DALLAs \\ Fort Worth We Don't Cut Corners We Cut Deals Gil NeUmaN Managing Director Mid-Atlantic Retail Investment Lead 202.280.2722 mAY 22–25, 2016 A p r i l 2 0 1 6 / S C T 21

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