IMMOFINANZ recorded strong growth in the number of visitors to its retail properties in 2018: More than 142 million customers visited the STOP SHOP retail parks and VIVO! shopping centers with over 800,000 sqm of rentable space. That represents an increase of roughly 20 million visitors, or 16.7%, over the previous year. On a like-for-like basis, i.e. after an adjustment for acquisitions, sales and completions, the number of visitors rose by 4.8% to approximately 128 million. The retailers operating in the IMMOFINANZ retail parks and shopping centers generated a year-on-year increase of nearly 5.0% in their gross sales revenues.
“These outstanding frequency and revenue indicators confirm the success of our customer-oriented brand policy for the retail sector. The 142 million visitors recorded in 2018 represent nearly the total population of four of our core markets: Austria, Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic“, explained Dietmar Reindl, COO of IMMOFINANZ. “Based on average revenues per square meter, the retailers in our STOP SHOPs and VIVO!s generated solid retail revenues of approximately EUR 1.6 billion during the past year.“
This positive development is also reflected in IMMOFINANZ‘s like-for-like rental income from the retail business which, after an adjustment for acquisitions, sales and completions, rose by 4.1% in 2018.
“Our tenants value the standardised and decentralised shopping formats which we have developed for the STOP SHOP and VIVO! properties. These concepts stand for good value for money well as high quality and recognition value – at locations in nine countries“, commented Gerald Grüll, Head of Asset Management Retail at IMMOFINANZ. The largest tenants in the retail sector include international top brands like H&M, C&A, Deichmann, KiK, dm, Takko, JYSK, LPP, the Inditex Group, CCC, Pepco and NewYorker.
Strong brands form the basis for fully rented new openings and attractive acquisitions
Two fully rented IMMOFINANZ development projects – the STOP SHOP Pozarevac and the STOP SHOP in Vrsac in Serbia with roughly 15,500 sqm in total – opened in 2018. In November 2018, IMMOFINANZ also announced the acquisition of eight retail parks in Slovenia, Serbia and Croatia, which are not yet included in the frequency data for 2018. The STOP SHOP portfolio now covers 80 locations in nine countries that have roughly 564,000 sqm of rentable space and, with an occupancy rate of 98.8%, are fully rented. IMMOFINANZ‘s ten VIVO! shopping centers have nearly 304,000 sqm and, with an occupancy rate of 97.9%, are also fully rented.
Two STOP SHOP locations in Poland and Serbia are currently under development: The new retail parks in Siedlce and Sremska Mitrovica will have roughly 18,000 sqm of rentable space.
The IMMOFINANZ retail properties
At the end of December 2018, the retail portfolio covered 93 properties in Austria, Czech Republic, Hungary, Slovakia, Romania, Poland, Serbia, Slovenia and Croatia with a portfolio value of EUR 1.47 billion. Of this total, ten properties operate under the VIVO! shopping center brand and 80 as STOP SHOPs. The overall occupancy rate equals 98.2%.
The STOP SHOP retail parks offer a broad range of products with good value for money. With efficient transport connections as well as extensive parking, they concentrate on price-conscious “smart shoppers” who value easy accessibility. The VIVO! shopping centers stand for an uncomplicated shopping experience for the entire family as well as a balanced branch mix with numerous entertainment and recreational activities.