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'Fashion leads retailer demand for lease in Asia-Pacific'
Dec '13
Retailer demand for leases in the Asia-Pacific region during the third quarter of 2013 continued to be led by fast fashion retailers, as groups in this sector entered new markets and introduced sister brands to locations where they already had a presence, as per the latest retail report by Asian real estate consulting firm CBRE.
According to a statement issued by CBRE Hong Kong, the study, which analyzes retail expansion for the first three quarters of 2013, found that Japanese and Korean groups operating in the fast fashion sector were particularly eager for cross-border expansion, whereas department stores also became more active.
For the luxury sector, big high-end brands continued to add new stores in Beijing and Shanghai but were more focused on core areas in top cities rather than expanding elsewhere, the report adds.
As per the report, “in Southeast Asia rising demand for new trends and styles from the emerging middle class continued to spur the entry of fast fashion retailers into key markets.” 
“During the period Zara opened its first store in Hanoi and its sister brands Bershka and Stradivarius established their first outlets in Manila, whereas H&M opened a 41,980 sq. ft. flagship store in Bangkok’s Central World—its fourth shop in the Thai capital—and launched its first store in Jakarta in early October”, the report states.
Sebastian Skiff, executive director, CBRE Retail Asia, said retailer demand is expected to remain firm overall, and will continue to be led by bridge brands and mid-range fashion groups, with many retailers in these categories focusing on key markets in China and Southeast Asia for new market entry and expansion.
In markets where they are already established, retail groups are looking for brand extension opportunities to launch their related brands in premium locations, he added.
Jonathan Hsu, director of CBRE Research, Asia Pacific, said in key markets such as Hong Kong, Shanghai and Singapore slightly more subdued demand combined with a lack of space in core locations and high rents will continue to restrain retailer expansion and limit further rental growth. 
However, retailers in these markets will continue to focus on key requirements in core areas, a trend that will impact rents in secondary locations, he added.

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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