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Retail Trends That May Affect Central Florida


spenser1058

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  • 2 weeks later...

Madewell, the division of parent J. Crew that is still doing well, has a new store in Tampa’s Hyde Park and (egad!) St. Johns Town Center in Jax.

Have we lost our hipster cred in retail to JACKSONVILLE, for God’s sake? 

https://www.tampabay.com/news/business/2019/10/31/tampa-bays-first-madewell-opens-in-hyde-park-village/

From the St Pete Times 

Edited by spenser1058
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  • 2 weeks later...

It will be interesting to see how the Dean Foods bankruptcy affects T.G. Lee operations. 

Not that Dean would immediately shut down T.G. Lee or anything that drastic, but it is interesting that Dean is said to be looking for buyers for its assets and not looking to reorganize and reemerge from bankruptcy as a going concern.

Edited by Camillo Sitte
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51 minutes ago, Camillo Sitte said:

It will be interesting to see how the Dean Foods bankruptcy affects T.G. Lee operations. 

Not that Dean would immediately shut down T.G. Lee or anything that drastic, but it is interesting that Dean is said to be looking for buyers for its assets and not looking to reorganized and reemerge from bankruptcy as a going concern.

A couple of things came to mind; when Dean spun off Birds Eye it was pretty seamless so I’m guessing this will be similar (and TG Lee has gone through ownership changes before with little angst for consumers - we were customers of theirs way back when they still had milkmen);

Packaged foods generally are being sold back and forth all the time these days. I dare to say it’s more the norm than products anymore than staying with one company for decades.

One thing you could be right about is that a merger with someone else could conceivably affect the Bumby facility. Heaven knows it would put a hole in the Milk District until they turn it into more storage units...

Edited by spenser1058
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  • 3 weeks later...

So, I read Target e-commerce is on fire thanks to Drive-Up. What’s going to be interesting is doing my regular Target run for groceries in the midst of all the Black Friday madness.

I wonder if I dare do my pickup Sunday morning or if the crowds will still be out and about. Usually SoDo is empty at 8am.

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

With the GAP on Park Ave. about to close and every time one turns around another retailer on the Avenue closes down to be replaced by yet another restaurant, I take a moment to bemoan the death of shopping in the core.

By the time shopping downtown had dwindled in the late ‘70’s  (with the brief indie revolution on Orange Ave in the Light Up Orlando era and the festival marketplace on Church St from 1988- 1995 or so as exceptions), we still had three (!) malls plus Park Ave. for close-in shopping.

Today, unless one is a fan of “treasure hunt” shopping at Marshall’s or the Nordstrom Rack, or if you happen to be a perfect rack size for one of Target’s burgeoning collections, it’s off to the ‘burbs with you to reach a mall. None of them are particularly easy to get to or convenient when you arrive (Florida Mall, in particular, has to be one of the most poorly laid out malls in human history).

Because I never fit the perfect proportions of Vitruvian Man (I’m too tall, my arms too long, my neck too skinny and depending on if I were rowing, cycling or being a couch potato at a given moment I would either have muscles or a tummy pooching out), I’ve always had to shop at better stores to get things that fit.

LL Bean online was a perfect compromise for years but now they keep “right-sizing” their inventory and have a lot less to choose from.

Brooks Brothers for decades was where bigger, athletic guys could shop but again they’ve shrunk their catalog of traditional sized clothes to a boring sameness while their more interesting, affordable “Red Fleece”  line assumes today’s preppy must be a twink.

Bottom line: I find shopping a pain anymore. Salesfolk at stores like Ivey’s and Rutland’s who once would call whenever something came in that was both attractive and a good fit are now as rare as an orange tree on Orange Avenue (yep, they really did exist once).

This is the invisible hand of the market at its finest. Let’s hear it for “progress”!

Edited by spenser1058
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If we ever get one of the “college format” Target stores, either downtown at UCF/VD or near the main campus on Alafaya Trail, what differences will we see?

•. It’s smaller

• It’s curated more closely to the local market 

•. The biggest sellers are food items (especially grab & go)

https://www.supermarketnews.com/retail-financial/target-readies-more-college-campus-stores

From Supermarket News

Edited by spenser1058
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Her Job Requires 7 Apps. She Works Retail.- Responding to the customer’s demand for instant gratification in the middle of the retail apocalypse.

"In New York City, retail clothing jobs declined by 9 percent from 2013 to 2018, even as overall employment in the city jumped about 14 percent. A report last week by the Center for an Urban Future found that the number of national retail chain stores in the city shrank 4 percent this year, the biggest drop since at least 2008."

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/26/nyregion/old-navy-workers.html

Now, anyone want to throw their money into investing in retail in downtown Orlando...?

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NYC was in a very different place than downtown Orlando. NYC got over-stored with flagships that served as marketing “weenies” (as Walt would put it) for entire chains.For heaven’s sake, even JCPenney decided to take on Manhattan.

As the internet lessened the need for that, and as landlords made rent more prohibitively expensive, that changed.

There are plenty of chains doing well, especially, ummm, Target, Walmart and especially online startups like Warby Parker that found brick and mortar can add to their businesses .The treasure hunt retailers like Marshall’s continue to do well.

BTW, even Nordstrom has found its way to Manhattan.

In retail, the companies that make retail interesting and invest in a compelling presentation are doing well. Those who just threw inventory on a rack and assumed it would sell like it had for a century (Sears, Penney) got a rude surprise.

Meanwhile, downtown Orlando has the opposite problem: zero retail even as the population explodes. It’s also the millennials that marketers most look for who comprise the population.

Even as Florida Mall shifts away from premier retail, St John’s Town Center in Jacksonville has been adding it and thriving.

Simon, who owns both, alerted retailers to the opportunities and is matching retailers to markets.

A DDB that had an aggressive go-getter in the role instead of a placeholder would be doing the same thing (other cities like Austin have).Our administration is failing us in that regard as in so many others.

Meanwhile,my thing all along has been to start with service retail and grow. Things people need every day and which need a level of assistance big boxes don’t offer have never gone lacking. They even survive during downturns if managed properly.

Bottom line: I suggest that downtown Orlando is in a different spot than NYC. There are opportunities here but someone has to ascend the bully pulpit.

 

Edited by spenser1058
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20 hours ago, spenser1058 said:

Our administration is failing us in that regard as in so many others.

I guess if the City really cared they'd do something like require developers to include retail if they requested a density bonus. Or they could offer grants to landlords and business owners to spruce up their façade. Maybe they could incent the Main St programs to create special events to try to attract potential customers in the area. Or they could host events with commercial realtors/ relo specialist/ leasing companies and developers. Oh wait, they do all of that.

I'm pretty sure anybody looking to locate a retail operation has heard of downtown Orlando and the amazing growth of residents over the past decade. If they want to locate here they can access all those incentives mentioned above. But why in the world should the City waste a lot of effort and resources on an industry that has an average pay of $11.70/ hr, is bleeding jobs (the sector lost 11,700 jobs in September alone and 197,000 in the past 3 years) and is closing properties faster than opening them (7600 stores closed in the first 10 months of this year)?

The people are here, the property is available, maybe the need is there (although I seldom hear people bemoan our lack of retail except in this forum)… If there is really a market here then investors will find it and fill it. So far, they don't see sufficient market.

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and if I might add, I don't disagree with @spenser1058 perspective that we should have more and better retail options in downtown. I only disagree that it should be a prime objective of the City, that resources should be diverted to reach that end and that the City (Mayor) is somehow failing in this endeavor.

In my opinion, if you want more and better retail do all you can to attract more hotel rooms- and that includes building a convention/ conference center. That would improve the retail / restaurant environment more than any other development in the City. 

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More on just how the headlines are getting the Retail Apocalypse wrong from the Motley Fool:

https://www.fool.com/investing/2019/12/31/what-investors-need-know-about-retail-apocalypse.aspx

Highlights:

• For every retailer closing a store, 5.2 are opening;

• 16 retailers are responsible for 73% of the closings.

There’s still plenty of opportunity for those who do the work to get it.

One might also note that since we have so little retail to speak of, we don’t have the concern of “1 step forward, 3 steps back.” Admittedly, the Walgreens that only has the least profitable part of the store is potentially a target, but even more likely is that the remarkable growth in downtown residents (in some of the most sought after age categories) since the recession moves us forward IF someone makes that  information known to retailers.

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by spenser1058
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Meanwhile, Joy Wallace Dickinson reminds us of the Golden Age of retailing when stores like Jordan Marsh were at their peak. There’s also an ode to Mr. Dunderbak’s (albeit unnamed).

Nite Owl says I don’t mention the missteps of prior mayors like I do Buddy’s. Well, here was a big one.

The City paid almost $1 million in incentives and/or tax abatements to Cousins to demolish the Colonial Plaza Mall and redevelop it as the power center we know today.

So far, so good. The misstep came when Glenda didn’t tie one string to the windfall: the four-story Jordan Marsh (and the 1962 vintage neon sign visible from the E-W Expressway) should have been preserved as lofts or for some other use.

Allied’s 1960’s Jordan Marsh/Maas Brothers  stores were built as statement retail (the first Miami JM on Biscayne Blvd was accessible by boat) and when the Clearwater and St Pete stores closed, both found notable public uses as a meeting facility and museum, respectively.

Instead, it was leveled and the resulting center, while successful, is nondescript.

https://www.orlandosentinel.com/features/os-fe-joy-wallace-dickinson-20200105-evq437jlxnhlnjinnzycuf2tja-story.html

From the Sentinel 

Jordan Marsh Colonial Plaza Orlando FL

From Flickr/ William Bird

 

 

Edited by spenser1058
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20 hours ago, spenser1058 said:

More on just how the headlines are getting the Retail Apocalypse wrong from the Motley Fool:

https://www.fool.com/investing/2019/12/31/what-investors-need-know-about-retail-apocalypse.aspx

Highlights:

• For every retailer closing a store, 5.2 are opening;

• 16 retailers are responsible for 73% of the closings.

There’s still plenty of opportunity for those who do the work to get it.

One might also note that since we have so little retail to speak of, we don’t have the concern of “1 step forward, 3 steps back.” Admittedly, the Walgreens that only has the least profitable part of the store is potentially a target, but even more likely is that the remarkable growth in downtown residents (in some of the most sought after age categories) since the recession moves us forward IF someone makes that  information known to retailers.

 

 

 

 

 

That's good. I guess it explains all the success stories over at Colonial Mall, West Oaks, Oviedo and Sanford. Seems Florida Mall is showing much of the same success.

The NAICS sector for retail is made up of over a dozen categories including auto sales and parts stores (the biggest category by $), grocery stores, gas stations and restaurants.  So, yes when a 300,000 sq ft anchor closes in a mall and lays off their 150 employees, but at the same time a Jersey Mike's, a mattress Store, Great Clips, Ear Piercing Pagoda and a vape store open you can get a 5:1 ratio I'm just not sure you come out the better for it. While 16 retailers account for a lot of losses, 4 account for pretty much all of the gains in the 4521 NAICS sector (department stores).

The BLS separates employees of restaurants in a different category then the census NAICS categories, but the BLS says  YTD the retail industry has lost 26,000 jobs. It also says food and beverage have added 149,000 jobs in the past 4 months. Simply guessing here, but I'd say a vast majority of the 5 new opening stores for every 1 closing fall into the F&B category.

Edited by AmIReal
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Per Reis Moody mall vacancies are at their highest- more than any time during the 2 previous recessions. As spenser has pointed out retailers in general are doing ok on the back of a strong consumer, but malls are dying nationwide. And yesterday Pier One announced they may not be an ongoing concern.

Retail may very well not be dead, but the way all of us used to know retail appears to be.

https://www.bizjournals.com/orlando/news/2020/01/07/us-shopping-mall-vacancies-hit-two-decade-high.html?iana=hpmvp_orl_news_headline

 

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