Shopping Bags and Global Flags: Retailers Vie for a Stake in U.S. Real Estate Market

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PART II: International retailers land on U.S. soil

Beyond cross-border capital flows, international retail brands continue to land on U.S. soil for expansion and are targeting top-tier core markets for their storefronts. A diverse consumer base, buoyant income growth and a resilient economy has currently lured 175 international brands to take root in 19 top retail markets coast to coast, according to JLL’s latest report, The New World of Retail.  European retailers have expanded most extensively into the United States with Italian, French, British, Swiss and German retailers crossing the pond most frequently.  

“Nearly one in five international retailers with U.S. operations has a storefront in New York City because it’s the perfect incubator for building brand awareness and testing the waters with a broad consumer base,” said Bob Gibson, Vice Chairman of JLL in New York City. “We are starting to see leasing traction pick up steam in markets with lower barriers to entry like Dallas, Houston and Boston. These cities are benefitting from population booms from corporate relocations and the energy and technology sectors’ evolution and success.”

While there are challenges facing retailers and investors operating internationally, the benefits far outweigh the risks, according to the JLL report. “Borders are becoming irrelevant and in the coming decade, owners and occupiers of real estate will have a laser-focused approach on investment and expansion, creating portfolios with varied markets, risk and maturity,” concludes Caldwell.

JLL’s The New World of Retail Index ranks the top U.S. retail markets based on a combination of short-term variables and sustainable long-term characteristics including household income growth, the number of total retailers, rental rates, vacancy levels, gross leasable area, and the balance of supply and demand. To learn more about each city ranking download the full report:

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