Tenant mix, property asset managers, tenant location, tenant mix policies, monitor tenant mix.
The management of tenant mix by shopping centre managers in South Africa was compared with that found to have been used by shopping centre managers in the UK (Downie et al., 2002). Relevant aspects included how to maintain an effective mix, the factors influencing the location of tenants, the extent that tenant mix policies are documented by property asset managers and the monitoring of tenant mix. A total of twenty responses were received from leasing executives (letting agents), retail asset managers, investors, centre managers and property managers in South Africa, representing shopping centers totaling more than 1, 25 million square meters GLA.
The study found that similar levels of importance were given to each aspect by respondents in both the countries. In both studies, anchor tenants were seen to be the most important factor of determining tenant mix and the image of a shopping centre. In the UK retail store specialists played a more dominant role than in South Africa in influencing the shopping centre tenant mix decision and the location of stores within the shopping centre. The lack of required unit sizes and vacant units was found to be the greatest hindrance to the updating of the tenant mix in both studies. A formal tenant mix policy updated on a frequent basis was found to be a determining factor in the keeping the tenant mix relevant and reflecting modern retail trends. The monitoring of turnover by evaluating monthly turnover figures or accessing a turnover index on a monthly or yearly basis was seen as the most important tool to monitoring, and thereby managing, the effectiveness of the tenant mix.
The study provides guidelines to owners, asset managers, managers and investors in South African shopping centers on commonly accepted techniques to maintain a satisfactory tenant mix.
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