oppn parties Ghost Malls: Bleak Future

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oppn parties
Ghost Malls: Bleak Future

By Linus Garg
First publised on 2024-05-10 06:30:09

About the Author

Sunil Garodia Linus tackles things head-on. He takes sides in his analysis and it fits excellently with our editorial policy. No 'maybe's' and 'allegedly' for him, only things in black and white.

Are many malls in India, following the worldwide trend, going to seed? A report by real estate consulting firm Knight Frank, titled "Think India, Think Retail 2024" found that although there was marked improvement in leased space in Grade A and some improvement in the same in Grade B malls, Grade C malls were going to seed, forcing developers to think of demolishing for redevelopment or auctioning them after closing them permanently.

According to the report, there has been a surge of 59% in ghost shopping malls, or malls where leasable space remains unoccupied. But this is happening mostly in Grade C properties as brands on expansion mode are ignoring them for Grade B and more often for Grade A properties. This has meant that while the latter two are performing well, the former is losing out heavily.

Knight Frank says that Delhi, Mumbai and Bengaluru reported an increase in leased shopping space while Hyderabad showed a small decline. But even in these four cities, some malls, which are not positioned well, are showing signs of decay and lower footfalls and lesser conversions are pushing them to the brink of closure.

With online shopping eating into the sales of stores and customers preferring to visit Grade A malls more often, Grade C malls are facing a tough time. It also depends on anchor stores, multiplex and food options, apart from entertainment zones and ease of access. Since all malls look the same and have almost the same brands vying for attention, the larger, well-planned malls have a head start in this regard and those who cannot provide a complete experience to the consumers are increasingly becoming irrelevant.

The scenario as it is unfolding proves that people are visiting malls for a complete experience which includes shopping with large anchor stores, food and entertainment. Any mall that misses these tricks is looking at a bleak future.