Retail Chain Reaction

June 22, 2015

Coming soon to a shopping center near you: more U.S. chain retailers.

According to the National Retailer Demand Monthly report from RBC Capital Markets, many chains are making moves in anticipation of an impending interest rate hike. The report finds that plans to open new stores are up since May, with growth noted in several sectors.

The figures are positive, even if conservative. Retailers listed in RBC’s database bumped 24-month store openings by 0.5 percent since March, and 3.4 percent year-to-date, indicating a total of nearly 80,000 new locations. Of those, 41,999 sites will open in the next 12 months, up 2.7 percent year-to-date.

While craft retailers and apparel stores notably added to their existing store-opening plans, at 80 and 88 new locations, respectively, restaurant chains and convenience stores are also in the mix. The most significant growth may be registered in the childcare sector, with 120 additional planned store openings. Among the top 30 retailers planning to open the greatest total number of stores were Dollar General (1,300), Family Dollar (1,000), Dollar Tree (600) and Sephora (100).

With new shopping center development already at a post-recession high, these increases indicate a profitable future for retail landlords. Beyond solid quarterly results for the first quarter of 2015, the growth should signal further improvement in occupancy levels as well as market rent levels. Plus, National Real Estate Investor reports that retailer demand for space will remain at robust levels, especially with new supply still in check.

Now is a great time for investors to consider their current offerings and measure against the trend to capitalize on potential profits and occupancy. Tap into the Client Advisory Services available through Intelica Commercial Real Estate to evaluate your market position and adjust to ensure the best possible outcome.