Restructuring processes in the fashion sector ensure very high take-up on the city centre retail market
While waves of closures by retailers such as Galeria, Görtz or Gerry Weber continue to dominate the discourse on the development of the stationary retail market, in the wind shadow of these headlines, re-let large spaces have noticeably boosted the market dynamics in the first half of the year. It becomes clear that closures do not necessarily mean a retreat from city centre locations, but are rather of a strategic nature and can be the starting signal for targeted new openings. This interplay between shop closures on the one hand and new openings on the other had a decisive impact on retail take-up in the first half of the year, which is reflected in BNP Paribas Real Estate's market data on inner-city lettings.
With take-up totalling around 275,000 m² in city centre locations, the nationwide retail market achieved its best interim result since 2019 (just over 280,000 m²) in the first six months, leaving the previous year's figures behind by 37% (Q1-2 2022) and 24% (Q1-2 2021). Considering only the letting volume in the segment of spaces with 1,000 m² and above (over 160,000 m²), no comparable take-up has been generated at mid-year since 2017 (around 165,000 m²). Against this backdrop, it is not surprising that large spaces, with a share of just under 60 % in the current year, form the most important pillar of leasing activities. More than half of these spaces were previously occupied by department stores or textile department stores such as Galeria, Appelrath Cüpper, C&A, H&M or Zara, some of which have already secured new shops in prime locations. These examples show that it is often the same players who on the one hand increase the amount of available spaces, but on the other hand are also responsible for the reduction of vacancies. Consequently, the volume of the fashion sector in the segment above 1,000 m² is particularly remarkable with a total of almost 100,000 m².