If new products can come and go, why can't stores? This is the premise behind the Pop Up phenomenon that has taken over the world of retailing. With no sign of this trend slowing, it’s one that presents immense potential for property owners – regardless of location or sector.
Contrary to some popular held property beliefs, Pop Ups are not limited to emerging or online retailers who perhaps are not in the market for a longer term lease. Rather, the Pop Up is the modern forum for all brands – from Target, eBay and Kanye West to local designers, visiting stylists, online retailers and artisan creators.
The Pop Up is all about surprising consumers with temporary stations, guaranteeing exclusivity because of the limited time span. The trend was born of the “new economies” – the Entertainment Economy, the Experience Economy, the Surprise Economy – buying environments created and nurtured by current trends, consumer expectations and changing access to information and products.
While the Pop Up began in static, vacant spaces, they are now also mobile – think branded buses and custom marquees.
Property owners and agents have in the past seen Pop Ups as a way of filling vacant space – a temporary measure before the real tenant moved in. While this is a great way of generating activity and income for space, the Pop Up should not be viewed in any way as temporary.
JLL’s Director of Retail Property and Asset Management Jacqui Kinloch said property owners needed to include Pop Ups in their overall strategies to remain ahead of the consumer consumption curve.
“We now consider Pop Up tenancies as part of overall Leasing Plans. For some clients we factor in a Pop Up space to be permanently filled with a range of users over a 12-month period," she said.
“For shopping centres this can be a great asset as each Pop Up represents effectively a new “brand” to the centre, appealing to new markets and generating new foot traffic."
Ms Kinloch says an analysis of data shows the Pop Up leasing category within JLL-managed shopping centres has seen double-digit year-on-year sales growth from 2012 to 2014, with no signs of slowing.
“With vacancy rates across some sectors at 6.8 per cent, finding space is easier and property owners are fully supportive of the temporary retail space-taker.
“Pop Up shops might have been seen as a response to recession-induced change but now have broader significance as a champion of wider change processes."