The shopping centers, as we have known them for the past 30 years, will end. This is one of the key findings of the study "End of the shopping centers, or start of a new generation?" released this week by CBRE. The analysis is based on the phenomenon of closure of several shopping centers in the USA, a market, however, very different from European and Portuguese. The consultant does not believe that the same happens in our country, on the contrary.
Last year, the sales in Portuguese shopping centers registered an increase by 8.4%, while the number of visitors increased by 0.5% after 3 years of falls. And the investment market in this segment of assets has never been so active: only in the first quarter of this year were transacted 4 shopping centers, with a cumulative value of €673 million. Another 10 centers are currently in commercialization, which makes the consultant to expect a new record of investment in shopping centers by the end of 2018.
Cristina Arouca, director of CBRE's Research department, explains that "the characteristics and the situation of trade in the United States are quite different from those in our country, since the degree of surplus of supply, stock obsolescence and penetration of online commerce in Portugal is much lower than in the United States. However, there will be challenges."
The Big Data analysis will be very important for retailers to get to know their customers better, as well as implementing more personalized marketing strategies. Incorporating online shopping in the centers should also facilitate the development of all-American strategies and strengthen customer service.
Also noteworthy is the growing inclusion of non-retail offer in shopping centers, which go beyond leisure or catering. The shoppings increasingly incorporate a range of convenience equipment such as health services, public services or coworking spaces.