Shawn Massey, CCIM, SCLS

Weekly CRE and Retail Article Round Up – January 28th, 2013

Sorry I missed sending this out last week. I was attending the Retailer One on One in Nashville! I hope you enjoy this week’s articles.
CEO of Xceligent Doug Curry Responds
How To Circumvent A Lease’s Assignment And Subletting Restrictions
Commercial Real Estate: Returns Good, Time To Invest?
Dyer County receives award for rural development
Gallery offers a ‘Nu’ face for the old Broad in Memphis
Nineteenth Century Club to weigh both highest and best bid for historic mansion
What is next for Loopnet?
Memphis Wonder Bread bakery could see new life
How to Lease Commercial Real Estate:
What is a Triple Net Lease:
What is the Difference Between a Real Estate Broker and an Agent?
Why Billionaire Investor Ron Baron Likes Commercial Real Estate And Private Equity Stocks
The 3 Benefits of a Well Done Prospecting Letter
The disturbing and sometimes tragic challenge of walking in America

From the desk of Al Taf

NRF warns retailers of possible trouble ahead
January 15, 2013, NEW YORK — Despite caution among consumers, retailers wrapped up 2012 with a healthy holiday shopping season, according to a new report by a retailing trade group.
The National Retail Federation said that holiday retail sales increased 3% over the year before, to $579.8 billion. December retail sales increased 0.8% seasonally adjusted from November and 2.1% unadjusted year over year. Nevertheless, the 3% increase was still below the NRF’s projected 4.1% growth. Meanwhile, nonstore holiday sales grew 11.1%.

US retail sales rose 0.5 percent in December
January 15, 2013, WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. consumers increased their spending at retail businesses in December, buying more autos, furniture and clothing. Steady job growth and lower gas prices kept consumers shopping for the holidays, despite worries about potentially tax increases.
Retail sales rose 0.5 percent in December from November, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. That’s slightly better than November’s 0.4 percent increase and the best showing since September.

Study: Most shoppers use Internet to purchase and research
January 14, 2013, New York — A study released Monday by Cisco revealed that, as retailers reinvent their in-store shopping experience in the face of the continued rise of e-commerce, digital content from the Internet has emerged as the most powerful influence in buying decisions for the majority of shoppers in all channels.
The third annual Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group study of consumers, entitled “Catch and Keep Digital Shoppers,” found that online ratings and reviews were the most influential source for making purchasing decisions, and that shoppers increasingly want access to digital content in stores through a variety of devices.

Retail imports to increase 2.3% in January under looming threat of port strike
January 11, 2013, Washington — Import cargo volume at the nation’s major retail container ports is expected to increase 2.3% in January over the same month last year as retailers continue to urge labor and management to avoid a strike at East Coast and Gulf Coast docks, according to the monthly Global Port Tracker report released today by the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates. A strike would close 14 ports from Maine to Texas where nearly 15,000 dockworkers handle 40% of the nation’s ocean cargo.

Consumer comfort drops as Americans brace for payroll tax boost
January 10, 2013 Consumer confidence in the U.S. slumped last week to the lowest level in a month as Americans prepared to lose a portion of their pay to taxes.

The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index fell to minus 34.4 in the seven days ended Jan. 6 from minus 31.8 the prior period, the biggest one-week drop since August. All three components of the measure declined.

Apparel Stores

Online sales boost Urban’s outlook
January 11, 2013, PHILADELPHIA — Urban Outfitters Inc. said its same-stores sales for the holiday season rose 9%, including its direct-to-consumer business. Excluding that unit, same-store sales fell 1%.
Total company net sales for November and December increased 15% to $666 million. Among Urban Outfitters’ brands, comparable sales increased 33% at Free People, 10% at Urban Outfitters and 5% at Anthropologie. Direct-to-consumer net sales increased by 38% for the period and wholesale segment net sales increased 21%.

Department Stores
Belk Inc. Eyes $6B in Revenues
January 16, 2013, Belk Inc., which is investing heavily in modernizing its business, expects to reach $6 billion in revenues in five years, chairman and chief executive officer Tim Belk said at the National Retail Federation annual convention on Tuesday.
Last year, the company was just shy of $4 billion, but the Charlotte, N.C.-based, family-run regional department store, expects significant growth through its $600 million, five-year modernization program, which Belk detailed during his presentation at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center. He said $270 million will be spent on remodels and expansions; $263 million will be spent on new technology; $42 million has been earmarked for branding, and $14 million will be devoted to enhancing service.

Macy’s Real Estate Plans: Six Steps Back, Nine Steps Forward
January 9, 2013 Macy’s Inc.’s real estate plans for 2013 include six store closures, nine openings and the consolidation of two stores in one market.

Once all of these changes have been implemented, Macy’s will operate 798 stores in 45 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and Guam. Bloomingdale’s will have a total of 37 full-line and home stores, as well as 13 Bloomingdale’s Outlet stores.

Discount Stores
Five Below sales up in Q4
January 17, 2013 Philadelphia — Specialty value retailer Five Below’s fourth quarter total sales for the period from October 28, 2012 through January 12, 2013 increased 34% to $158.5 million, while comparable store sales for the same period increased 4.2%.
Five Below has proposed a secondary offering of 7,000,000 shares of its common stock, amid reports that sales are not as bad as originally feared.
Walmart to hire vets, boost US sourcing

January 15, 2013 NEW YORK — Wal-Mart Stores Inc., the world’s largest retailer and nation’s largest private employer, is making a pledge to boost its sourcing from domestic suppliers and hire more than 100,000 veterans.
The plans were to be announced as part of an address by Bill Simon, president and CEO of Wal-Mart’s U.S. business, at an annual retail industry convention in New York.
Walmart to have eight city stores by week’s end; three more on tap

January 15, 2013 After battling labor leaders, entrenched grocers and City Council members, Wal-Mart is gaining traction toward its goal of opening “dozens” of stores in Chicago.
After Wal-Mart opens three smaller-format Neighborhood Market stores on Wednesday, the retail giant will count eight stores of varying formats inside the city limits.

Electronics Stores
hhgregg Cuts View on Prelim Results – Analyst Blog
January 15, 2013 Appliance and electronics retailer hhgregg, Inc. ( HGG ) announced the preliminary results for the third quarter fiscal 2013 (ended December 31, 2012), which is scheduled to release on January 31. hhgregg has also revised its guidance for fiscal 2013 ending March 31, 2013.

For the third quarter, the company expects net sales to decline approximately 3.6% year over year to $799.6 million, with a decline of approximately 9.7% in comparable store sales. The poor comparable sales performance is expected to come from both the video and other categories, which are expected to decline 24.6% and 23.7%, respectively.

RadioShack Ends Deal to Sell Mobile Phones In Target Stores
January 14, 2013, RadioShack Corp. (RSH) said it will end its partnership with Target Corp. (TGT) in which the consumer-electronics retailer sold mobile phones at kiosks within Target stores, citing failure to come to a new, “financially-appealing” agreement.
Best Buy’s U.S. holiday sales flat

January 11, 2013, Minneapolis — Best Buy Co. on Friday reported revenue of $12.8 billion for the nine weeks ended January 5, 2013, compared with $12.9 billion for the nine weeks ended December 31, 2011. Online revenue rose 10%.
Same-store sales were down 1.4%. Domestic same-store sales were flat, but fell 6.4% internationally.
Grocery Stores
Usual Four Grocers Make Best Employers List

January 17, 2013 NEW YORK — Four food retailers made Fortune magazine’s latest list of the “100 Best Companies to Work For” — something they have made a habit of doing.
The four include Wegmans Food Markets (ranked 5th), Nugget Market (34th), Whole Foods Market (71st), and Publix (77th). Whole Foods dropped from its 32nd spot on the 2012 list, while the other three remained close to (Wegmans was 4th and Publix was 78th) or the same as (Nugget) their position on last year’s list. Publix, Wegmans and Whole Foods are among 13 companies to have made the list every year since it was first compiled in 1998. This year marks the 8th consecutive year Nugget Market has been on the list.
Sprouts Opens 150th Store

January 15, 2013, Sprouts Farmers Market’s Grand Junction, Colo., store, which celebrates its grand opening on Jan. 16, marks an important milestone for the Phoenix-based natural food chain – its 150th location. The new store is also Sprouts’ 23rd in the Centennial State
New Natural Chain Targets Midwest

January 10, 2013, — Natural food retailing veteran Pat Gilliland, whose brother Mike is the former chief executive officer of natural and organic supermarket chains Wild Oats Markets and Sunflower Farmers Market, is leading another natural grocer based here on an expansion kick.
Lucky’s Markets, founded here 10 years ago, has plans to expand to six new locations in the Western and Midwestern states over the next 30 months, according to its website.

Home Improvement & Office Products

Williams-Sonoma holiday sales up 4.8%
January 17, 2013 San Francisco — Williams-Sonoma reported that its revenue increased 4.8% to $1.01 billion for the nine-week period ended Dec.30.The company also backed its fourth-quarter and full-year forecast.
Williams-Sonoma will discuss its performance in more detail in March when it releases its fourth quarter results.

Chipotle Falls After Preliminary Earnings Trail Estimates
January 16, 2013, Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. (CMG) fell the most in almost three months after reporting preliminary fourth- quarter profit that trailed analysts’ estimates.
The shares dropped 5.5 percent to $280.94 at the close in New York for the biggest decline since Oct. 19. Chipotle declined 12 percent last year, the fifth-worst performance in the Russell 3000 Restaurants Index.
Dunkin’ Donuts Plans for 300-Plus New U.S. Restaurants This Year
January 15, 2013, CANTON, Mass. — Dunkin’ Brands Group continues to be one of the fastest growing quick-service restaurant (QSR) companies in the country. The operator of Dunkin’ Donuts announced today its franchise expansion in the southern California market as well as its plans to open 330 to 360 net new U.S. restaurants.
“This past year was an exciting one for Dunkin’ Donuts’ growth in the United States, and we are delighted to begin 2013 with the long-awaited announcement that Dunkin’ Donuts will be opening restaurants in California, where there is already incredible passion for our brand,” said Nigel Travis, CEO of Dunkin’ Brands and the president of Dunkin’ Donuts U.S

Schlotzsky’s sees growth with reimaged units
January 15, 2013 Schlotzsky’s Franchise LLC this past year completed the reimaging of older stores in the 350-unit chain and this year plans to amp up expansion of its tri-brand units and catering.
Over the past several years, the company has packaged new stores with sibling brands Cinnabon and Carvel, all owned by Atlanta-based Focus Brands Inc.

Brazilian concept leaving mark on U.S.
January 14, 2013 One of Brazil’s fastest-growing fast casual concepts hopes to see a similar growth pattern in the United States. Giraffas, which opened in 1981 in Brazil and now has about 400 locations, made its U.S. debut last year opening three stores in South Florida. The fourth unit, a $750,000-investment that brought the community 40 jobs, opened last week, also in South Florida as part of what Carlos Vanegas, the chain’s U.S. marketing director, calls just the beginning. Florida will see at least 10 more locations in 2013, and the growth spurt isn’t stopping there.

U-Swirl, Inc. Acquires Aspen Leaf and Yogurtini Frozen Yogurt Chains
January 14th, 2013, Henderson, NV, U-Swirl, Inc. (OTCQB: SWRL), parent to U-SWIRL International, Inc., the owner and franchisor of U-SWIRL Frozen Yogurt® cafés, today announced that it has acquired specific assets of Aspen Leaf Yogurt, LLC, a subsidiary of Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory, Inc. (NASDAQ: RMCF), as well as the Yogurtini frozen yogurt franchise chain.
The acquisition includes all intellectual property and worldwide franchise rights for a total of 46 operating locations comprising 40 franchise locations and 6 corporate locations. Multiple units are in some phase of development. Under the terms of the acquisition agreement, Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory becomes the majority shareholder in U-Swirl, Inc., and the current U-Swirl management will continue to run day to day operations. As a result of this acquisition, U-Swirl has almost tripled the size of its store base, with over 75 stores now operating in 23 states.

Ruby Tuesday closes Marlin & Ray’s, Wok Hay brands
January 10, 2013, Ruby Tuesday Inc. said with its second-quarter results on Wednesday that it would be immediately closing its 13 Marlin & Ray’s restaurants in order to focus its efforts on bettering the company’s core: Ruby Tuesday and fast-casual concept Lime Fresh Mexican Grill.
“The Marlin & Ray’s brand does not represent a meaningful conversion opportunity for us going forward,” said company chief executive James J. “JJ” Buettgen during his first earnings call since taking over the position on Dec. 1.

Burger 21 Announces Strong 2012 with the Opening of First Franchised Restaurant and Signing of Eleven Franchise Units

January 10, 2013 TAMPA, Fla Burger , a new fast casual concept founded by the owners of The Melting Pot® Restaurants, Inc., announced today that it signed franchise agreements with six different entities in six states in 2012 to develop a total of 11 restaurants as part of its aggressive growth strategy to bring its crafted burgers and hand-dipped shakes to more cities across the country.

Ruby Tuesday Reports Second Quarter Fiscal 2013 Results
January 09, 2013 Same-restaurant sales increased 0.3% at Company-owned Ruby Tuesday restaurants. Restaurant-level operating margin of 16.1%, compared to 14.4% for the prior year, an improvement of 170 basis points primarily driven by cost savings
Net loss of $15.1 million, or net loss of $4.6 million excluding the following: 1) Pre-tax impairment charges of $16.9 million incurred due to our decision to close and exit the Marlin & Ray’s and Wok Hay concepts, close two Company-developed Lime Fresh restaurants, and seek a buyer for the Truffles Grill concept which we currently license, and 2) CEO transition expenses of $0.4 million primarily related to search fees. This compares to the prior-year net loss of $2.0 million.

Dollar Stores, Warehouse Club & Other Retailers
QuikTrip, Mars Earn Spots on ‘100 Best Companies to Work For’ List
January 17 2013 NEW YORK — QuikTrip and Mars Inc. have landed on the “100 Best Companies to Work For” list, published by Fortune magazine.
The 16th annual list places QuikTrip at No. 66, the same spot the Tulsa, Okla.-based convenience store chain occupied last year. It is the 11th time overall the retailer has appeared on the list.
The One Secret to Winning the Business Every Time
Can A Tenant File A Tax Appeal When Its Lease Doesn’t Give It The Right To Do So?
Step One for Lease Two
Report: Industrial, retail segments improve for Memphis commercial real estate
Dyersburg Mall sells for $4.35 million
Food Giant store to open in Medina
Each week please listen to the Commercial Real Estate Show with Michael Bull
Winning bidder chosen for Nineteenth Century Club building; preservationists say demolition is likely

From the Desk of Al Taf

Store Opening Plans Reach Five-Year High, Report Claims
Jan 22, 2013, In an encouraging sign for the retail sector, store openings plans in the U.S. continue to climb up. According to the just released National Retailer Demand Monthly report from RBC Capital Markets, store opening plans reported during 2012 reached a five-year high. In December alone, the more than 2,000 retailers included in the RBC survey increased their opening projections by 886 stores. Overall, as of January 2013, those retailers plan on opening 81,990 new stores during the next two years—an increase of 1.1 percent compared to December 2012.

“With a strong year-end performance on the sales front that saw year-over-year retail sales increase 3.9 percent in November and an estimated 4.4 percent in December, we would expect the store opening momentum to continue into 2013,” wrote RBC Capital Markets analyst Rich Moore. He added: “Importantly, in our view, current retailer optimism is led by many retailers from the small shop segment. Unlike past cycles, where the entrepreneurial, mom and pop owner was the primary contributor to the growth of small shop space, we believe small shop tenancy has shifted to well-capitalized, national retailers.”
Consumers’ Dec. Spending Boosts Holiday Retail Sales
Jan 21, 2013, Solid consumer spending in the month of December helped retailers finish the year with a healthy holiday shopping season, although economic uncertainties kept consumers cautious.

According to the National Retail Federation (NRF), December retail sales (excluding automobiles, gas stations and restaurants) increased 0.8 percent seasonally adjusted from November and increased 2.1 percent unadjusted year-over-year. Total holiday retail sales increased 3 percent, below NRF’s projected forecast of 4.1, to $579.8 billion. Additionally, non-store holiday sales grew 11.1 percent.
Study: Marketers to increase spend, hiring in 2013
Jan 21, 2013 Portland, Ore. — Survey results released Monday by Infogroup Targeting Solutions and Yesmail Interactive found that almost 70% of companies plan to spend more on data-related marketing initiatives in 2013, with a heavy emphasis on hiring.

More than half of the respondents surveyed said they plan on adding new employees to oversee their data efforts this year, including analysts and executives.

Shoppers get e-satisfaction from luxury retailers
Jan 18, 2013 ANN ARBOR, Mich. — Luxury shoppers are more likely to use mobile channels when shopping but are slightly less satisfied with e-commerce overall, according to the Luxury E-Retail Satisfaction Index released by customer experience analytics firm ForeSee. Luxury brands have an aggregate score of 77 on the study’s 100-point scale, falling just short of the average score of the top 100 online retailers overall (78).

Consumer confidence falls in January
Jan 18, 2013 New York — Consumer confidence fell in January to a one-year low, according to the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index released Friday.
The month’s preliminary index fell to 71.3, the lowest since December 2011, from 72.9 in December. Economists had forecast the index would rise to 75, Bloomberg News reported.

Vacancy rates down in fourth quarter at U.S. centers
Jan 17, 2013, Vacancy rates at U.S. malls and strip centers eased in the fourth quarter, according to research firm Reis, which tracks the top 77 U.S. markets. The vacancy rate at malls declined to 8.6 percent, off one-tenth of a percentage point from the previous quarter, Reis reports. The mall vacancy rate has now declined for the five consecutive quarters since an industry 12-year high of 9.4 percent in the third quarter of 2011, according to Reis.
At strip centers, meanwhile, vacancies fell back to 10.7 percent in the fourth quarter, from 10.8 percent in the third. The average asking rent at malls increased by 0.2 percent in the fourth quarter, to $39.31 per square foot yearly, up from the previous quarter. This is the sixth straight quarterly increase. At strip centers, the average asking rent rose by 0.2 percent to $19.08 per square foot yearly, the fourth consecutive quarterly increase.

Discount Stores
Walmart Canada growth to slow
Jan 22, 2013 Walmart’s store count in Canada will increase by nine units during the coming fiscal year following an exceptional rate of growth in 2012.

Walmart Canada disclosed plans to invest $450 million in distribution center projects and new store construction and the expansion, remodeling and relocation of existing units. The company didn’t provide details on the distribution projects, but did say it would undertake at least 37 supercenter projects. This past year the company completed a larger than 73 projects as a result of the acquisition of former’s Zeller’s locations it picked up from Target.

Michaels Stores reports holiday sales up 4.6 percent
Jan 18, 2013 Michaels Stores, Inc., the Irving-based chain of arts and craft stores, said Friday that net sales for the November and December holiday shopping period were $1.164 billion, a 4.6 percent increase over the same period of 2011.
Michaels said that same-store sales for the two-month period were up 2.4 percent. The company said it plans to release its fourth-quarter results on March 31.
Home Improvement & Office Products

Lowe’s to increase hiring with housing market rebound
Jan 23, 2013 Mooresville, N.C. — Lowe’s announced that it plans to hire 45,000 seasonal workers at its U.S. stores, 13% more than a year earlier, and add 9,000 permanent part-time employees as the housing rebound spurs remodeling.
The permanent part-time positions include store associates focused on direct interaction and expertise for customers. Employees in the permanent positions will be scheduled to work during peak weekday shopping times.

Starbucks profit up 12%; 1,300 stores on tap for 2013
Jan 24, 2013 Seattle — Starbucks Corp. said its profit rose in its first quarter as customers spent more at its stores in the United States and Asia.
Starbucks earned $432.2 million in the quarter ended December 30, 2012, compared with $382.1 million in the year-ago period. Revenue rose 11% to $3.8 billion, slightly below expectations. The company reported that global same-store sales rose 6%. In Europe, the metric fell 1%. Americas’ comparable store sales grew 7%. Same-store sales in the China/Asia Pacific region grew 11%.

After record-breaking year, Corner Bakery Cafe looks ahead to even greater growth in 2013
Jan. 22, 2013 DALLAS, — Corner Bakery Cafe’s renewed emphasis on franchise growth paid off immensely in 2012 with the signing of 10 new Area Development Agreements, more than doubling its best previous year. The new agreements added 125 cafes, raising the total to 288 cafes under development, as the company moves forward on its goal to double its U.S. footprint by the end of 2015.

In addition, the fast casual concept, popular for its ingredient-inspired menu, made fresh to order for breakfast, lunch and dinner, opened 20 new restaurants in 2012, including its first in Florida, Northern California and South Texas.

Brinker: 2Q sales rise despite traffic decline
Jan. 22, 2013 Brinker International Inc., parent to the Chili’s Grill & Bar and Maggiano’s Little Italy casual-dining chains, reported a 4.2-percent increase in quarterly profit on Tuesday, as same-store sales rose slightly despite dips in traffic.
Dallas-based Brinker reported net income of $37.2 million, or 50 cents per share, for it’s second quarter ended Dec. 26, compared to $35.7 million, or 44 cents per share, in the prior year period. Revenue rose 1.1 percent to $689.8 million.

Restaurants Crave Smaller Venues
Jan 22, 2013,Some restaurant chains are adopting a novel strategy for growth: getting smaller.
The sluggish economy, difficulty obtaining loans, and the prospect of rising labor costs due to the federal health-care overhaul are pushing some chains to downsize stores so they can better attract new franchisees and open more restaurants profitably. Soft Pretzel Franchise Systems Inc., which has a chain of 125 mostly franchise-owned Philly Pretzel Factory shops, has started opening “kiosks” in shopping malls, amusement parks, military bases and airports. The kiosks are a fraction of the size of its usual retail locations.
Dollar Stores, Warehouse Club & Other Retailers

Convenience Store Count Knocking on 150,000
Jan 23, 2013 ALEXANDRIA, Va. — The U.S. convenience store count increased to a record 149,220 stores as of Dec. 31, 2012, a 0.7% increase (1,094 stores) from the year prior, according to the 2013 NACS/Nielsen Convenience Industry Store Count.
The convenience retailing industry has seen remarkable growth over the last three decades. At yearend 1982, the store count was 76,200 stores, at yearend 1992 the store count was 100,800 stores and at yearend 2002 the store count was 132,400 stores. The growth of c-stores selling motor fuels was nearly triple the overall growth in the industry, as fuels retailers added convenience operations and convenience retailers added fueling operations. Overall, 82.6% of c-stores (123,289 stores) sell motor fuels, a 1.9% increase (2,339 stores) over last year.

Fuel-Selling C-stores Outpace Overall Industry Growth
Jan 23, 2013 NATIONAL REPORT -– The growth of convenience stores selling motor fuel was nearly triple the overall store growth in the c-store industry, according to new data released today by the 2013 NACS/Nielsen Convenience Industry Store Count.
The U.S. convenience store count grew slightly to a record 149,220 stores as of Dec. 31, 2012. That’s an increase of 1,094 stores, or 0.7 percent, from the prior year.

More jobs, stores ahead at Dollar General in 2013
Jan 23, 2013 GOODLETTSVILLE, Tenn — Dollar General has big plans for growth in 2013 with the creation of 6,000 new jobs and the planned addition of 635 new stores and 550 relocations. With the addition of these jobs in 2013, Dollar General will have created approximately 30,000 jobs in the last six years.

Blockbuster to close 300 stores
Jan 22, 2013 Dallas – Blockbuster will shutter about 300 of its stores in the United States in the coming weeks. The closures will result in the loss of about 3,000 jobs and leave the chain with some 500 U.S. locations, according to a spokesman for Blockbuster parent company Dish Network Corp.
The closures will affect underperforming stores or those nearing the end of their lease. Specific locations have not yet been announced. Dish, a satellite pay-TV provider, acquired Blockbuster and about 1,700 stores in a bankruptcy sale in 2011. It closed about 500 Blockbuster stores last year.

7-Eleven’s No. 1 Priority
Jan 22, 2013, NEW YORK CITY — Within five years, 7-Eleven could be nearly as ubiquitous in Manhattan as Starbucks is today. The company plans to open at least 30 new stores a year, according to an American Public Media report.
Lots of places sold those commodities then, but now, 7-Eleven wants to grow, and fast, and New York is 7-Eleven’s No. 1 priority. 7-Eleven currently owns a dozen or so stores in the city. In January 2011, when it first announced its push toward more urban sites, it said it can foresee as many as 100 stores in the city by 2016.

Dollar Channel Eyed for Continued Growth
Jan. 22, 2013, SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — The dollar channel will continue as a fast growing retail sector, and will compete with traditional retail not only for consumers, but also for the attention of suppliers.
Executives from Deloitte elaborated on the results of a recent consumer/industry study on the dollar channel during the FMI Midwinter event here, and they pointed to the high stakes involved.
Deloitte: Sales in warehouse club stores to outpace other channels
Jan 22, 2013 New York — Consumer products executives expect their highest growth to come from the warehouse club channel compared with any other retail sales channel over the next three years, including mass merchandise, grocery, and e-commerce, according to new research from Deloitte.
Nine-out-of-10 (89%) of consumer package goods (CPG) executives Deloitte surveyed expect their company’s sales through the warehouse club channel to increase during that time. This channel is outpacing grocery in CPG companies’ focus, as less than half (49%) expect grocery sales to increase during that three-year period, while one in six (18%) expect sales in the grocery channel to decline.
Arkansans form private real estate fund
Honorees have been selected for the inaugural Building Memphis Awards
A down-to-Earth approach to great neighborhoods

From the ICSC
Planned store openings at five-year high: Report
U.S. demand for retail space hit a five-year peak at the end of 2012, with nearly 82,000 stores scheduled to open within 24 months, according to RBC Capital Markets. “For the year, planned store openings in our database of more than 2,000 retailers rose 16.2 percent,” wrote analyst Rich Moore in a note to investors. Many of the chains with expansion plans are well capitalized national retailers looking to fill the small-shop spaces previously dominated by mom-and-pop chains in open-air community and power centers, he wrote. The trend bodes well for landlords, since these tenants can pay higher rents and generally experience less cash-flow volatility, according to Moore. The retailers planning the most new stores are Subway, Dollar General, Five Guys and Family Dollar, in that order, RBC Capital says. The retailers that plan to grow the most as a percentage of their existing store base are Cash Store, Children’s Orchard, Five Guys and National Cash Advance. Moore predicts the trend will continue. “With a strong year-end performance on the sales front that saw year-on-year sales increase 4.4 percent for December,” he wrote, “we would expect the store opening momentum to continue into 2013.”

ICSC taps Forest City CEO LaRue as chairman
David J. LaRue, president and CEO of Forest City Enterprises, one of the most recognizable real estate development firms to the public at large, has been nominated to be ICSC’s chairman for the 2013–2014 term. LaRue, 51, has been an active ICSC member for nearly 20 years and a trustee since 2008, playing a key role in the organization’s administration and many of its activities. In June 2011 he succeeded Charles A. Ratner as head of Forest City, becoming the first chief executive in the company’s 90-year history not to be related to its founding family.
Forest City is noted for the diversity of its real estate, which encompasses just about every project type across a range of market categories. The publicly traded company owns retail, office and residential properties in key markets around the United States. The combined value of those properties is some $10.7 billion and includes regional lifestyle, neighborhood and enclosed centers as well as urban, big-box, entertainment, residential and office retail. There is similar variety in the firm’s residential development, which includes apartments, condos, master-planned communities, and housing for the elderly and for military personnel. Forest City’s high-profile developments include such mixed-use projects as the 4,700-acre Stapleton community, in Denver, and the recently opened Barclays Center stadium, in the New York City borough of Brooklyn. Other famous projects include The New York Times building, in Manhattan, and University Park at MIT, near Boston.
The company is also a leader in sustainable development, and several of its projects have attained LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. Stapleton is LEED-certified, and The Yards Park, in the Capitol Riverfront district of Washington, D.C., is LEED-Gold-certified, as will be the Waterfront Station retail-office building, also in Washington.
Forest City is not diverse only in terms of its real estate, however. One of the company’s core values is diversity and inclusion, both in terms of its employees and the communities in which it operates. The company employs a director of diversity and inclusion, and is a major sponsor of the Real Estate Associate Program, established in 1997 to promote diversity in the industry. A challenge for the industry is to recognize and respond to demographic changes in the U.S., both at the consumer level and in terms of promoting workplace diversity, LaRue says. “Our industry must have a sharper focus on this important issue,” he said.
The breadth of Forest City’s operations makes LaRue an ideal candidate to lead ICSC, given the diverse professional backgrounds of its membership, observers say. “David heads a company that owns property across all categories and in all kinds of markets, and therefore his experience meshes with that of just about every one of ICSC’s members in one way or another,” said Michael P. Kercheval, ICSC’s president and CEO. “Forest City is also a leader in sustainable and innovative development, all of which makes David’s nomination an exciting one as we, as an industry, embrace the future.”
LaRue, who holds a bachelor’s in business and accounting from Wittenberg University, began his career as an internal auditor and financial analyst at The Sherwin-Williams Co. He joined Forest City in 1986 as a financial analyst, rising to executive vice president and COO in March 2010.
He has served on the ICSC Global Task Force, taking part in the most ambitious review of the organization’s programs and services. He has been an advocate of ICSC’s Global Public Policy efforts in Washington, contributing to the ICSC PAC, and he has spoken at ICSC events.
One of ICSC’s continuing priorities for the coming year will be to push for federal legislation requiring online retailers to collect sales taxes in those states in which brick-and-mortar retailers are required to. “Traditional physical stores cannot continue to be discriminated against by this tax policy,” said LaRue. Reform in this area would also benefit cash-strapped state and local public coffers, he says.
LaRue is active in his community as a member of various professional, charitable and artistic organizations, including the Cleveland School of the Arts. He helped found the Basketball Challenge Cup, a series of charity games held every spring in Rocky River, the Cleveland suburb where he and his wife, Cindy, have raised their four children. The event raises money to fight drug and alcohol abuse among young people.
“David LaRue is a visionary leader with proven abilities to get things done and work cooperatively with people in the industry,” said ICSC Past Chairman Gary D. Rappaport, SCSM, SCMD, SCLS, SCDP, chief executive of The Rappaport Cos. and chairman of ICSC’s nominating committee, in announcing the nomination to the Board of Trustees at its midwinter meeting in Scottsdale, Ariz., Thursday. “David stands for Forest City’s core values: integrity, sustainability, diversity in the workplace and dealing fairly with stakeholders — all qualities consistent with ICSC’s values.”
If, as expected, LaRue is elected at ICSC’s annual meeting of members at RECon in May, he will succeed current Chairman Brad M. Hutensky.
“The diversity of his professional experience and background,” said Kercheval, “mirrors that of the industry he will lead as it grows in complexity and as its contribution to the community expands.”
Triple-net-lease REITs merge
Consolidation in the net-lease REIT market continued this week with the announced merger of the publicly listed Spirit Realty Capital and the nontraded Cole Credit Property Trust II. Both Phoenix-based REITs own triple-net-lease properties — freestanding buildings leased to tenants that assume responsibility for maintenance and taxes. Each Spirit Realty share will be exchanged for 1.9 shares of CCPT II, and the deal’s value has been pegged at about $1.5 billion.
CCPT II will hold 56 percent of the merged entity, which Spirit Realty will manage. Spirit Realty will also account for seven of the nine board members. The merged company will continue to be called Spirit Realty and to trade on the New York Stock Exchange under the stock symbol SRC. CCPT II will receive no internalization or transaction fee from the deal. (Several nontraded REITs suffered bad publicity last year when analysts said such fees tend to hurt investors.)
Spirit Realty will be the second-largest such REIT traded in the U.S., with 2,012 properties across 48 states and a market value of some $7.1 billion. Escondido, Calif.–based Realty Income is the largest, with a market value of about $8.4 billion and 3,528 properties. Realty Income spent roughly $1.6 billion last year to buy net-leased properties, including its recently closed acquisition of American Capital Realty Trust.
A low threshold for entry has placed net-lease properties among the most active sectors in commercial real estate since the market began rebounding in 2010. Spirit Realty, whose major stockholders include Macquarie Group and hedge fund TPG-Axon, was launched in 2003 and completed an IPO last September. Cole Real Estate Investments registered the CCPT II REIT in 2004, and the unit began buying properties the following year.
Spirit Realty stands to gain a more diverse geographic and tenant base, says Thomas H. Nolan Jr., the firm’s chairman and CEO. Top tenants will be CVS, Shopko and Walgreens. “We also expect the merger to enhance our access to the capital markets,” Nolan said in a press release, “and better position us to take advantage of consolidation opportunities in the net lease space.”
Stores must use technology to fight showrooming: Report
Consumers the world over are increasingly open to shopping both online and in stores, according to an IBM survey of 26,000 shoppers. Some 80 percent of those surveyed said they had made their latest nongrocery purchase at a store, and about half said they would return to that store the next time, while some 35 percent said they were unsure which way they would go next. Only 9 percent said they would definitely make future purchases online.
“Today’s consumer is sophisticated and opportunistic, navigating between store and online environments interchangeably to meet their shopping needs of the moment,” said Jill Puleri, global retail leader at IBM Global Business Services, in a press release. “To satisfy clients, retailers must deliver a consistent, convenient shopping experience across each consumer touch point, extending from the store to online and back again.”
Of the eight product categories in the survey, the two most popular for an online shift were consumer electronics and luxury, including jewelry and designer apparel.
Nearly a quarter of the respondents said they had “showroomed” — meaning they had intended to buy something in a store but then bought it online for reasons of price and convenience. The young, the male and the affluent appear to be the ones most likely to engage in the practice. There seemed to be more showroomers in China (which accounted for 26 percent of the surveyed showroomers) and India (13 percent) than in the U.S. (7 percent). Online-only retailers accounted for one-third of the reported showrooming cases.
Puleri says store retailers can strengthen their position in this environment by means of such strategies as creating digital tie-ins and embracing consumer-owned technology, while online retailers can optimize their websites for the various sorts of devices available today. Only 3 percent of the respondents said they are using retailers’ mobile apps.
Phillips Edison-ARC Shopping Center REIT paid about $60.5 million for a portfolio of six grocery-anchored shopping centers in the Greater Atlanta area. The portfolio comprises nearly 508,000 square feet and has five Kroger stores and a Publix as anchors.
Retail Properties of America sold two retail properties in Texas to an undisclosed buyer for $36.9 million. Those properties are the nearly 90,000-square-foot Carrier Towne Crossing, in Grand Prairie, and the 113,500-square-foot Southwest Crossing, in Fort Worth.
The Morris Cos., of Rutherford, N.J., paid an affiliate of EJ Plesko, of Madison, Wis., $34.5 million for the 100,400-square-foot Millenia Crossing, in Orlando, Fla. Nordstrom Rack anchors the center, which is located near Mall of Millenia.
Holualoa Cos. sold the 190,000-square-foot Campbell Plaza, in Tucson, Ariz., to Krausz Puente LLC and Krausz RC Properties One LLC, of Irvine, Calif., for $32.3 million.
Urstadt Biddle Properties bought a 50 percent tenant-in-common stake in both the Chestnut Ridge Shopping Center, Montvale, N.J., and the Plaza 59 Shopping Center, Spring Valley, N.Y., for $13.4 million and $4.8 million, respectively.
JBH Woodlake Plaza LLC sold the 131,200-square-foot Woodlake Plaza, Greenacres, Fla., to a South Florida private equity investor for about $10.2 million. The major tenants include Dollar General, Monterrey Market and Phoenix Theatres.
1200-1300 Concord Avenue Holdings sold the 87,200-square-foot Hungary Brook Shopping Center, in Richmond, Va., to Coastal Equities for $5.7 million. Anchor tenants include Food Lion and Dollar Tree.
Dish Network Corp. says it plans to close about 300 Blockbuster stores over the next few weeks, leaving the video chain with only 500 in the U.S. The satellite television provider already closed 500 Blockbuster stores last year, after having bought the chain out of bankruptcy administration for $320 million in 2011.
Walmart Canada announced plans to open at least 37 Supercenter stores by Jan. 31, 2014, bringing the total store count to 388. The retailer says it will spend about C$450 million (roughly on par with the U.S. dollar) to build those stores, upgrade and expand existing shops and construct distribution centers.
Lowe’s says it will hire about 45,000 seasonal employees at its U.S. stores this spring — the busiest time of year in the home-improvement industry. The Mooresville, N.C.–based chain also said it will add on some 9,000 permanent part-timers to help manage an anticipated rise in sales spurred by a boost in construction activity. The Commerce Department reports that housing starts jumped 12.1 percent in December to their highest level since June 2008. Permits for home construction were up too and at their highest in about 5 years.
Roughly two out of three Americans who received a gift card over the holidays have redeemed the card already, according to a survey ICSC and Goldman Sachs conducted last week. Respondents said they had received about $175 worth of gift cards each, on average.
DDR Corp. has borrowed about $1.2 billion to refinance debt and extend maturity dates. A $750 million revolving credit line and a $400 million term loan set to mature in 2017 will replace two revolvers that were to mature in 2016 and a term loan due next year, the firm announced. JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Wells Fargo arranged the unsecured revolver, which may be expanded to $1.25 billion. The interest rate on both loans was shaved by 25 basis points, to 1.4 percentage point over LIBOR, the firm said. (A basis point is a hundredth of a percentage point.)
Toronto-based Brookfield Asset Management says it plans to spin off some of its commercial real estate holdings into a publicly traded holding company called Brookfield Property Partners. Brookfield Asset Management will retain 90 percent of the $10 billion-market-cap new company, which will in turn own part of General Growth Properties plus a majority stake in Brookfield Office Properties. The parent company says it expects to reap some $40 million in management fees annually from the new entity and that it anticipates regulatory approval of the transaction by the end of this quarter.
Merlin Entertainment Group announced plans to open a $10 million, 30,000-square-foot aquarium at Simon Property Group’s Concord (N.C.) Mills in the spring of next year.
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Young-Adult Dining Declines; Boomers Pick Up Slack

From the desk of Garrick Brown
Terranomics Retail Newsline
Week Ending January 20, 2013
The Great Retail Real Estate Challenge of 2013 Emerges
A slew of mixed indicators released this week show greater strength in the retail sector, though plenty of reasons remain for caution ahead.
Following the release of unexpectedly strong commerce department numbers for December, finalholiday sales numbers were released by the National Retail Federation. Though we all knew that the holiday seasondidn’t live up to high expectations, it was not as bad as many had reported or feared. We saw a 3.0% increase in annual sales—a respectable number that would have been viewed as a major victory in either of the last two years, save for the fact that the market outperformed those levels in 2010 and 2011 and set the stage for this year’s high expectations.
Meanwhile, a new report from Deloitte found that retail revenues are up for the world’s 250 largest retailers, despite the global slowdown. And most importantly for the readers of this digest, the retail sector of commercial real estate appears to be improving.
The latest statistics released by REIS indicate that U.S. regional mall vacancy decreased in Q4 2012 to 8.6%, down from a peak of 9.4% in 3Q 2011. Likewise, REIS reported that U.S. strip center (their definition of strip centers includes neighborhood, community,power centers and just about all other non-mall or non-freestanding shopping center space) vacancy fell from 10.8% to 10.7% over the course of the final quarter of the year.
These numbers reflect similar trends indicated by Costar’s recently released national figures. In their National Retail Report for Q4 2012, Costar reports that mall vacancies now stand at 5.8%, down from a posting of 5.9% just three months ago, but back to the same level where they stood at the close of 2011. Power center vacancy now stands at 5.9%, reflecting strong occupancy gains over the 6.1% rate of Q3 2012 and a substantial improvement over the 6.5% level of one year ago. Meanwhile, shopping center vacancy (which includes neighborhood, community and strip centers) is down to 10.6%for last quarter’s 10.8%. Costar reports that one year ago, U.S. shopping center vacancy stood at 10.9%. Only specialty centers saw an uptick in vacancy,posting an overall rate of 7.9%, up from 7.8% three months ago and last year’s reading of 7.6%.
But now time for the bad news… Consumer confidence fell in January (as measured by the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan index—possibly because the end of the payroll tax deduction hit consumer paychecks in a way that they could clearly see and feel.
Meanwhile, all of the above retail building statistics may be positive, but none have yet to be impacted by what is clearly emerging as one of the major trends of 2013;grocery store consolidation. Last week,we reported to you the possible implications of the sale of Supervalu to private equity player Cerberus. We believe that closures of underperforming stores are imminent and that they could number as many as 200 over the course of the next 18 to 24 months. These will disproportionately hit the segment of the market that REIS classifies as strip centers and that Costar defines as simply shopping centers (we call them neighborhood or community centers).
Anyway, more announcements came this week. Belgian conglomerate Delhaize, operates multiple grocery banners in the U.S. under its Delhaize America subsidiary, including Food Lion, Bottom Dollar Food, Harvey’s,Hannaford and Sweetbay Supermarkets. This week Delhaize announced that they will be closing 33 Sweetbay stores, leaving the chain with about 72 locations(primarily in Florida) within the next few months. It also will be closing eight Food Lion and three Bottom Dollar stores in the Philadelphia market, though it still has plans to add eight more Bottom Dollar stores elsewhere in the state of Pennsylvania over the course the next few months.
The good news for retail landlords of neighborhood or community centers remains that so far,it appears that the various closures we are tracking for all of the consolidating grocery players have been spread about quite equally. Obviously, Delhaize’s closures will only impact Philadelphia and Florida, while the lion’s share of Supervalu’s closures we think will play out on the West Coast. But the reality is that there will be more in 2013, not the least ofwhich will be Tesco’s Fresh and Easy. The announcement this week that they are cutting their real estate positions seems to cement the speculation that when they withdraw from the U.S. market thisyear they will do so quickly, and most likely, with a large sale as opposed to seeking to offload their real estate in portions. Aldi has emerged as the smart money bet to purchase the chain’s existing stores and infrastructure—immediately giving it along desired West Coast presence. However, you simply cannot yet rule outWalmart or any number of dollar store chains.
And so, the real question for market statistic junkies in 2013 will be whether the occupancy losses that will come from the larger traditional grocery players can be offset by increasing demand from the emerging class of smaller niche grocery users? Or will landlords just have to settle with the continued slow upswing of inline space users and the snail’s pace return of mom-and-pop tenants.
– Garrick H. Brown

Terranomics Top Five

Consumerconfidence falls in January
Chain Store Age01.18

Retail vacancy ratescontinue their decline
SCT Newswire01.17

Delhaize’sSweetbay to close 33 stores
Chain Store Age01.17

NRFwarns retailers of possible trouble ahead
Retailing Today01.15

Deloitte Report: Retail revenues rebound despite globaldownturn
PRNewswire 01.14

The Big Picture

CSNewsForecast: Which Categories Will Be Bright Spots in 2013?
ConvenienceStore News 01.19

The retail revolution
Atlanta Business Chronicle 01.18

Report:Consumer confidence rises as restaurant sales, traffic fall in December
Nation’sRestaurant News 01.16

NRF:Holiday sales up 3%, falling short of 4.1% forecast
Chain Store Age01.15

Reports Signal Rising Strength in Consumer Spending
New York Times01.15

Higherpayroll tax decreases U.S. paychecks
Bloomberg 01.14

Walgreens OutlinesGrowth Strategy at Annual Meeting
ConvenienceStore News 01.14

Retailer Roundup

Exclusive: Nordstrom Rack eyes Nashville
NashvilleBusiness Journal 01.18

Grocery Grab Bag

New Kroger Marketplace Opens
Supermarket News01.18

Walmartto open second campus location
Chain Store Age01.16

Supervalusplits in half
Retailing Today01.10

The Restaurant Review

Moe’s: The Face of Growth
QSR 01.18

Jamba Juice to Enter Missouri and Kansas with FranchiseDevelopment Agreement

Sprinkles Cupcakes Poised for Growth as it AnnouncesPartnership with KarpReilly
PRNewswire 01.17

KrispyKreme Greenville, SC Grand Opening Celebration
Restaurant NewsResource 01.17

Dunkin’Donuts to return to Southern California with 150 stores
Los AngelesTimes 01.16

JambaJuice CEO unveils next phase of turnaround
Nation’sRestaurant News 01.16

Red Mango Celebrates Record Franchise Development in 2012
QSR 01.16

Wingstop Soars to New Heights with 9th Year of Increases
QSR 01.16

Ground Round Accelerates Growth
Restaurant News01.16

Sizzler Announces Restaurant Revitalization and FurtherFranchise Expansion
Restaurant News01.16

Schlotzsky’s Sees Growth with Reimaged Units
Nation’sRestaurant News 01.15

Brazilian Concept Leaving Mark on U.S.

Moreopenings planned for Darden Restaurants early this year
Orlando BusinessJournal 01.10

Regional Newstand Development Notes

Nebraska’s K-Stores ChainGets a New Owner
ConvenienceStore News 01.18

NYCRanks #1 for Increased Value
Globe Street 01.09

Local, National Leaders Present Trends Affecting Memphis-Area Commercial …

Technology Outlook: Where Is Technology Taking the Real Estate Industry?

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Shawn joined the Memphis Office of The Shopping Center Group in 2003 and became a partner in 2008 to focus on shopping center leasing and tenant representation. He has a Bachelor of Business Administration and an MBA in finance and real estate from The University of Memphis. Prior to joining The Shopping Center Group, Shawn was a Senior Project Manager for Cingular Wireless (AT&T) and was responsible for real estate development management, construction and implementation for wireless antenna and tower infrastructure for Tennessee and Mississippi. He is adjunct professor at The University of Memphis where he teaches the masters level class in real estate development and sustainability. In 2013 in will be working with Homburg Academy and University teaching on-line commercial real estate classes internationally. He holds both the CCIM and SCLS designations. Shawn engages in tenant representation, third party leasing/sales, investment sale and development consulting in the retail sector.

He is the co-founder and Chairman of the Board for the Memphis Business Academy charter schools (K-12th grade) in the Frayser area of Memphis. He is currently the 2013 vice-president of the Memphis CCIM chapter, 2013 Secretary/Treasurer of the MAAR Education foundation. He has serve on various charitable organizations boards in Memphis including Habitat For Humanity, the Binghamton Development CDC Retail Committee and Youth Visions. He is a member of Christ United Methodist Church. His wife is Price Phillips and he has two children Amanda and Matthew.

For all your retail real estate needs (tenant representation, landlord representation and property, investment & land sales) I hope that you will choose The Shopping Center Group and me to represent you and your business. We understand that representation is a privilege and that you have a choice!

The opinions expressed in this post are entirely my own. They should not be considered the opinion of The Shopping Center Group, LLC in which I am associated.

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