The New Retail

The New Retail – Where will your next Drycleaning Location be?

Tim-Maxwell-(1)
By: Tim Maxwell

With 2015 looking like a year of net sale increases for drycleaners reporting to the American Drycleaner Magazine’s “Statshots” feature, it appears that the downward trend in sales that many businesses in drycleaning have been dealing with over the past 6 or 7 years may be coming to the end of a cycle. This is great news for operators that have weathered the storm through the first half of this decade.

With this optimistic economic perspective, the opportunity to open new retail locations to insure that their business is “fishing in the right pond” may be on the mind of those aftercare professionals that are looking at expanding their reach.

Landlords and Property Managers are increasingly re-imagining their retail locations to address the slow erosion of sales from traditional bricks and mortar to on-line shopping. Extensive landscaping, pedestrian-friendly walkways, outdoor seating, fountains and water features are being deployed to facilitate a better consumer experience. The new CEO of Edens (owner/developer of 136 retail centers), Jodie McLean in a recent interview stated, “We look at our places as the “living room of their communities”.

Given this perspective, and the resurgence in demand for pad sites on the periphery of traditional grocery-anchor backed plazas, see page 42, progressive drycleaners in expansion mode have great opportunities to secure top-tier locations.

Securing these locations require that now more than ever before, Drycleaners need to focus on factors most attractive to their landlords. The prime retail landlord of 2015 is looking for a retail tenant that provides multiple visits to the center every week, odor free, clean and attractive visually – without any traditional potential environmental liabilities.

Where GreenEarth Cleaning Affiliates have provided this level of confidence based on the unique silicone medium in their cleaning system for 15 years now…the pressure is on to continue to lower energy and utility use in the space.

Addressing methods of reducing energy and diverting waste from landfills in their centers are critical building blocks of sustainability initiatives that the most progressive property managers have embarked upon in the current decade. Some, such as KIMCO have achieved better than expected results and economic benefits based on a structured and focused approach, see Kimco report.

The future of good retail dry cleaning locations continuing to be made available to operating plants will require that garment care providers continue to evolve in their quest to be more efficient and relevant to not just the consumer, but also to those that lease the locations that the consumer visits.



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