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Viva La Retail

Viva La Retail
Retail?s back on track, if the 35,000 people (and 143 new exhibitors) expected at ICSC?s annual RECon conference in Las Vegas today are any indication. Bisnow will be on the ground for the next two days, bringing you coverage of the biggest retail event of the year.
David Henry in Las Vegas, May 2011
?We're out of space,? said a proud David Henry, CEO of Kimco Realty Corp, who's been nominated as ICSC's next chairman. The good news: there's hardly any shopping center development right now and international retailers are interested in expanding into the US—and this cross-border attentiveness will only further help shopping centers, he says. But the industry still faces challenges, including the lack of an online sales tax, economic-driven decreases in store footprints, and the continually struggling mom-and-pop niche.
Carole Baker, Tina Essegian, Margaret Caldwell, and Collete English Dixon in Vegas, May 2011
Video may have killed the radio star, but retail stores are still holding on against online outlets like Amazon, we learned yesterday from Walmart Realty's Carole Baker, Terranomics Retail Services' Tina Essegian, JLL's Margaret Caldwell, and Prudential Real Estate Investors' Collete English Dixon during an interactive session on the online shopping trend and its implications for the bricks. But in order to survive, retailers have to adapt to and embrace technology instead of having an ?us vs. them? mentality, Tina says. People still like the social aspect of retail, with 78% of the population still shopping in stores, Collete says. (When people start sending their holograms to the store, will that still count?)
Faith Hope Consolo, Holly Cohen, Terri Simard, Renee West, and Elaine Wynn in Vegas, May 2011
ICSC had its own version of The View yesterday, featuring top women in retail and hospitality. Prudential Douglas Elliman queen of retail Faith Hope Consolo moderated for J. Crew's Holly Cohen, Target's Terri Simard, Luxor and Excalibur Hotel & Casino prez Renee West, and Wynn Resorts' Elaine Wynn. Consensus: The market is getting better, but there's still a lot of uncertainty, especially when you depend on disposable income. ?It's erratic,? Terri says. ?When you think it's going up, you hit a bump.? Consumers focusing on reducing their debt are no longer as impulsive as they used to be.