COVID-19 reshapes the future of retail


August 12, 2020 | By RetailME Bureau

Dubai Festival City Mall

As COVID-19 reshapes the future of retail, many retailers have experienced a demand shock in light of travel and movement restrictions. According to CBRE, landlords have provided several relief measures to accommodate these retailers ranging from temporary rental holidays, rent reductions and deferments with some exploring lease restructuring and fit-out subsides.

While the short-term situation for retail is challenging, the disruption is expected to be positive for some. For instance, essential retail categories such as grocery and home stores are experiencing a surge in online purchasing. However, CBRE expects fashion and F&B retailers to continue to struggle in the medium term.

Also read: Proximity, convenience, sustainability are the future needs

In addition, COVID-19 is pushing organisations to streamline supply chains, with retailers leveraging on existing infrastructure. They are using a designated area of the retail store to co-ordinate delivery and collections and investing in platforms to enhance digital channels. This has been successfully demonstrated in mature markets, which are acting quickly to adapt to this change. Even as COVID-19 reshapes the future of retail, CBRE has yet to see this trend come through within this region.

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