On the Floor at ICSC in New York
Bisnow was on the scene of the ICSC New York Conference this week to bring you coverage (and because we've always wanted to see the Rockettes). We snapped Urstadt Biddle Properties' James Aries, Forest City Enterprises CEO David LaRue, and ICSC CEO Michael Kercheval. Turns out, you didn't buy enough PS4s, Xbox Ones, socks, Hug Me Elmos, and Monster High Dolls on Black Friday. Sales were weak, but retailers shouldn't fret: Overall November-December sales will be up 3.4% over last year, and 7% unemployment means more discretionary income to spend.
We also snapped Cushman & Wakefield Americas retail services leader Matt Winn, right, with NY senior director Steven Soutendijk. The top three retail stories to watch in 2014, according to Matt: the continued rise of luxury as it branches into off-prime locations (think Ulaanbaatar couture); further urbanization worldwide as people move to cities; and a greater focus on outlets ("on fire, everywhere, every brand," he says).
Thanks to the Internet, regional luxury fashion names began desiring national recognition, JLL's (and colleague photobomb victim) Michael Hirschfeld tells us. Now they want to be multinational. That's partly why his brokerage, Surge Retail, sold to JLL over five months ago; his clients wanted overseas advice. But can Manhattan luxury stores make money or are they just marketing tools? Michael says some can make it work (for instance, on Madison Avenue, rents range from $900/SF to $1,500/SF, and Belstaff sells $4,000 leather coats—that math works). He's seen a similar case of cart-before-the-horse rents in Miami's Design District, which has no hotel or residential and cannot live by retail alone.