Square One ranked 10th most profitable Canadian mall

Square One in downtown Mississauga has been ranked among Canada's most profitable malls, in a study by Avison Young. (Photos: Courtesy of Square One Shopping Centre)
Square One in downtown Mississauga has been ranked among Canada’s most profitable malls in 2015, in a study by Avison Young. (Photos: Courtesy of Square One Shopping Centre)

BY KELLY ROCHE

A downtown Mississauga mall ranked 10th nationwide in sales in 2015, according to a retail real estate study released Wednesday.

“We’re very pleased with that ranking and we’ve been in a very positive trajectory in the last 24 months in particular,” said Square One general manager Greg Taylor, adding “on average, we’ve been seeing about 10 per cent increases in our overall productivity number each month.”
Square One earned an estimated $994 in sales per square-foot last year, with Toronto’s Yorkdale topping the list at $1,610.
Commerical real estate services firm Avison Young published the report.
“Despite economic headwinds, retailer failures, digital disruption and the purchasing habits of a new generation, Canada’s evolving retail property sector and its top malls are doing just fine,” said Avison Young principal and practice leader of research Bill Argeropoulos.
“While hundreds of millions of dollars have been invested to renovate, expand or upgrade some of the country’s prominent malls to attract new retailers and combat e-commerce, the retail sector continues to attract new entrants and significant investor interest as well.”
Five of the malls making the cut are in Ontario, with four out of five in the Greater Toronto Area.
“The leaders in this club can hold their own among the top-performing malls in North America,” said Argeropoulos.
Square One‘s massive expansion saw the opening of a 130,000-square-foot luxury wing on March 1, anchored by Holt Renfrew, including well-known stores such as Harry Rosen, kate spade new york, Ben Sherman, and Michael Kors.
“First and foremost, it’s very important for us to have relevant, current retailers that are those that we know our customers desire to have,” said Taylor.
That includes a Quebec-based chain.
Ontario’s first Simons store opened March 17; the mall’s productivity is currently pegged at $1,002-total-sales-per-square-foot, Taylor said.
Despite the rising figures, the west coast is still dominating.
The study shows British Columbia (6.6 per cent ) and Vancouver (9.9 per cent) were the leading province and city in the nation for retail sales growth in 2015, followed by Ontario (4.5 per cent ) and Toronto (5.4 per cent).
Oil-dependent provinces Alberta and Saskatchewan are predicted to have the weakest outlook for retail sales in 2016, with Calgary and Edmonton expected to see declines of 2.3 per cent and 2.2 per cent by Dec. 31.
More than $4.5 billion worth of retail assets changed hands in 2015, “accounting for almost 20 per cent of the overall commercial real estate investment sales volume in Canada,” said Argeropoulos.

Though retail property investment sales volume was down 31 per cent from 2014, “retail as an asset class has been a hot commodity coming out of the Great Recession with almost $32 billion in retail property sales completed since the end of 2009, second only to the office sector with $35 billion.”


Top 10 retail malls in Canada in 2015 by sales per square foot
1. Yorkdale (Toronto)
2. Pacific Centre (Vancouver)
3. Oakridge (Vancouver)
4. Eaton Centre (Toronto)
5. Southgate (Edmonton)
6. Chinook Centre (Calgary)
7. Royal Bank Plaza (Toronto)
8. Rideau Centre (Ottawa)
9. Metropolis (Burnaby)
10. Square One (Mississauga)

(Source: Avison Young)
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