During the holiday season of 2014, I wrote a post titled Buried Alive that reported the robust growth of online shopping. As a result, I assumed that eCommerce was slowly beginning to replace malls in America. Poor assumption! Malls USA are alive and healthy.
According to new data released back in March by ICSC (International Council of Shopping Centers), the occupancy rate for the mall segment (super-regional and regional malls) was 94.2% at the end of 2014. This occupancy rate was the highest it has been since the end of 1987. That’s right 1987! Other metrics that reveal malls are alive and healthy are as follows:
· Sales per square foot have been growing steadily since 2009 when they were reported at $383. In 2014 they closed at $475 per square foot.
· NOI (net operating income), a metric that was first introduced in 2000, revealed a 17.5% increase in the fourth quarter (holiday season) of 2014 versus the fourth quarter of 2013. Note: The fifth consecutive quarter of double-digit growth.
Despite the rise of eCommerce, ICSC data clearly validates that malls USA are far from extinction.
Malls USA – Visit your local mall this weekend.