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London still a magnet for international retail brands: new report

London is home to more international retail brands than any other city in the world according to a new report.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

London still a magnet for international retail brands: new report

London is home to more international retail brands than any other city in the world according to a new report.

CBRE’s 2014 “How Global Retail” report shows that the city continues to attract new market entrants with 31 new retailers launching in the UK last year. Other cities in the top ten include Beijing, Moscow, Shanghai, Frankfurt, Taipei and Singapore.

The UK also retained the top spot as the most penetrated market by international retailers.

Eric Eastman, executive director, luxury goods & international retailers at CBRE, said: “London now attracts more international visitors that any other capital in the world. A flood of brand-hungry overseas shoppers, many from China, has swept into Central London. Space demand from luxury and international retailers has moved into hyperdrive as a result.

“There are simply too many global brands now for the traditional pitches in London to absorb them, which is why we are starting to see lettings to Dior and Chanel in Covent Garden and Philip Lim and Carven in Brompton Cross.”

Paris was found to be the world’s hottest global retail market attracting 50 new brands last year, while France is ranked as the leading country for new entrants, according to the report.

The findings reveal that retailers focused on fewer and larger markets in 2013 with 19 of the top 20 target cities considered mature markets compared with only 14 in 2012. Over 70% of the survey cities saw at least one new entrant throughout the year compared with 81% the year before. However, the top 20 target markets saw a 30% rise in new entrants.

The number of new entrants at city level was up by 25% year-on-year, with an increasing number of retailers crossing borders to grow their businesses. Paris welcomed 50 new entrants over the year, including 10 new luxury and business fashion brands. The French capital benefited from three new shopping centres in 2013, but it was the prime high street locations that attracted the most global brands.

France also topped the table of the "hottest" countries ahead of Japan and Hong Kong, with Paris the main point of entry for many retailers although some chose one of nine other French cities for their first store.

Tokyo was found to be the second most attractive city for global retailers with double the number of new entrants during 2013 than in 2012. Half of all new entrants (24) came from the US while a further 18 were from Europe. Hong Kong and Abu Dhabi were the third and fourth "hottest" markets with 43 and 35 new entrants respectively.

Jose Luis Martin, EMEA senior director of cross border retail at CBRE, said: “The improving economic prospects in Western Europe and North America is leading global retailers to refocus their expansion plans on mature markets and the world’s major retail destinations, with Paris, Tokyo, London and Berlin the top targets. Retailers have also turned their attention to recovering European markets and Asian and South American cities where they are still under represented.

“Global shopping centre development is also at an all-time high and is providing the opportunity for retailers to enter new markets, particularly in Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe. Owners are putting sizable resources into revamping, extending and freshening up their existing centres and securing major international brands is a key part of this strategy.”

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