ICSC New York Update: The retail vacancy rate for Madison Avenue in NYC has made some big moves in the past two years, dropping from double digits to below 2.5% as luxury and fashion brands move into the market. This high-street retail location has long been known for stiff competition, not only among consumers vying for the latest haute couture, but also among retailers competing for prime space and limited consumer dollars.
With more confident U.S. consumers, comes more confident international retailers eager to expand into the market. NYC has already attracted scores of international merchants, and JLL Retail expects European retailers to pursue opportunities in the market to advance their profitability and margins. Cross-border investment is more palatable for retailers that have reached saturation in their native markets and are chasing diversification and growth. New York’s extremely dense customer base offers expanding retailers access to the breadth and depth of the American consumer they’re seeking.
JLL’s Paul Berkman says, so far this year him team has conducted several tours with European luxury and boutique retailers looking to land space in New York. Retailers will continue to use New York to test and understand the receptivity of their offerings across borders.”
With more than $9 million of retail sales happens every minute in the U.S., and total retail sales in New York City exceeded $70 billion last year. There is great temptation for international brands to access the huge pool of potential new customers in the market.