Outlet centres increasingly popular in Poland

24 Jun 2015

CBRE - Magdalena Fratczak

The traditional shopping centre market in Poland appears to be becoming saturated and investors are now seeking other  ?niche? retail formats such as Outlet centres.

A typical outlet centre has at its disposal retail space of between 12 000 and 25 000 sq m. It attracts tenants by offering goods at prices that are at least 30% lower than those offered by regular stores. Generally, mind these centres are located in urban areas with the location enabling around 2 million visitors access to the scheme within less than 1.5 hours.


Magdalena Frątczak (photo), Director, Retail Agency, CBRE, comments:

?Ever since the beginning of the 90s, we have been witnessing the growth of the Polish retail market, with the first outlet centre opening in 2002. Outlet shopping centres have simply become indispensable; they not only provide diversification within the market and expand the range of goods and services offered to customers, but also facilitate business fluidity for numerous brands by providing an additional distribution channel. Successful commercialization processes carried out in respect of outlet facilities confirm the purchasing potential of this particular retail format. Significantly, an outlet centre customer is a buyer that makes real purchases. Due to the limited additional offer, i.e. services and refreshments, customer spending is not as greatly dispersed as is the case with traditional shopping centres.?


There are 13 facilities operating on the outlet centre market at the moment, with tenants offering their goods at prices that are at least 30% lower when compared to those offered by regular stores. Price is the distinguishing factor for outlet centres. When making the decision to open a store within an outlet facility, store owners become bound by a contract that obliges them to maintain lower prices.


Therefore, the fashion sector is the one most strongly represented amongst outlet centre tenants, with its share amounting to 50% of the total number. The sportswear and footwear sectors are also well represented,  with their share in outlet schemes amounting to 11.8% and 11.5% respectively. In turn, services have the weakest representation, with their presence oscillating at a level of 1%. Additionally, a characteristic common for the outlet concept is the absence of the restaurant section, i.e. the so-called food court, which is an integral part of a traditional shopping centre.


The success of an outlet centre depends largely on the location, density of population and catchment area. Taking into consideration the existing facilities, there are potential areas in Poland where new outlet centres could be erected. Initial estimates point to the south and south-east regions as well as Central Poland, although it is possible that increasing tenant numbers and the maturing retail market will result in the emergence of further potential locations.

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