June 14, 2021

50signs

The Fashion Spirit

For entrepreneurs, shopping malls have become viable option for their business

4 min read

Q: How are malls changing, and what opportunities does that present for entrepreneurs?

A: As you might expect as we move out of the worst of the pandemic in the U.S., most malls will have some vacancies to fill. Even before COVID, some malls, especially smaller strip malls, found challenges in keeping spaces occupied.

This means malls face stiffer competition for great tenants, and some landlords seem ready to get creative.

According to Bruce Nustad, president of the Minnesota Retailers Association, “I see malls embracing a more incubator-like role for entrepreneurs in taking new ideas to market.” This means a startup business might be able to approach the mall with a business in its infancy to find ways to make it a more successful launch while drawing new customers to the location and its existing tenants.

“Some mall owners now offer more flexible lease arrangements that streamline access for entrepreneurs who are trying out new approaches, products and services,” notes Nustad. “A prime example is the Mall of America Community Commons, which gives small startups access to larger levels of traffic without having to build out an entire retail space of their own.”

It all comes down to more creative uses of these properties. Notably, what used to be parking areas on the fringes of larger malls become footprints for restaurants, hotels and residential real estate. This compresses more potential customers within walking distance.

In addition, cities play a role. For instance, rezoning in the blocks around Southtown Shopping Center in Bloomington delivers a mixed-use model that creates more community, bringing residential and retailing into a convenient centralized neighborhood. In the case of Southtown, it also includes significant changes to transit so the area serves both commuters and people working in nearby offices, like that of the Best Buy headquarters.

Nustad also sees malls changing the direction of the transaction for leases in some ways. “Some malls are reaching out to entrepreneurs, in more of a recruitment mode, to see how things can work out for both the landlord and tenant. That’s a different operating model for a mall than in the past.”

Mike Porter is a faculty member in the marketing department at the University of St. Thomas Opus College of Business.

rn% endblock %","start":"https://users.startribune.com/placement/1/environment/3/limit-signup-optimizely/start"},{"id":"limit-signup","count":12,"action":"ignore","mute":true,"action_config":"template":"% extends "grid" %rnrn% block heading_text %Youu2019ve read your 10 free articles for this 30 day period. Sign up now for local coverage you wonu2019t find anywhere else, special sections and your favorite columnists. StarTribune puts Minnesota and the world right at your fingertips. % endblock %rnrn% block last %rn parent() rn# limit Krux pixel from https://www.squishlist.com/strib/customshop/328/ #rnrnrn% endblock %","start":"https://users.startribune.com/placement/1/environment/3/limit-signup/start"},"id":"meter-desktop-331","count":10,"action":"ignore","mute":false,"action_config":false,"start":"https://users.startribune.com/placement/1/environment/3/meter-desktop-331/start","id":"PDA991499opt","count":9,"action":"ignore","mute":true,"action_config":false,"start":"https://users.startribune.com/placement/1/environment/3/PDA991499opt/start","id":"limit","count":8,"action":"inject","mute":false,"action_config":"template":"

rnrnrnrn

rn

rn

rn rn

rn t

rn SUBSCRIBErn Already a subscriber? Log in.rn

rn

All Star Tribune readers without a Digital Access subscription are given a limited number of complimentary articles every 30 days. Once the article limit is reached we ask readers to purchase a subscription including Digital Access to continue reading. Digital Access is included in all multi-day paper home delivery, Sunday + Digital, and Premium Digital Access subscriptions. After the 1 month Premium Digital Access introductory period you will be charged at a rate of $14.99 per month. You can see all subscription options or login to an existing subscription herern

rn rn

rn

rn

rn

rn

rn","start":"https://users.startribune.com/placement/1/environment/3/limit/start"},{"id":"nag","count":7,"action":"lightbox","mute":true,"action_config":{"height":null,"width":"630px","redirect_on_close":null,"template":"% extends "shell" %rnrn% block substyles %rn

rn% endblock %rnrn% block page %rn#rnrn limit - count - 1 rnrn form.flow_form_open(nextAction: 'firstSlide', null, null, '_top') rn form.btn('Save Now') rn form.flow_form_close() rnrn

rnrnrnu2022 rnrnrnrn#rn

rn

rn

You have limit - count - 1 articles left

rn

rn rn u00a0u00a0u2022u00a0u00a0rn rn

rn

rn

rn

rn Save More Todayrn

Over 70% off!

rn

rn

rn

rn

99u00a2 for first 4 weeks

rn form.flow_form_open(nextAction: 'firstSlide', null, null, '_top') rn form.button('Save Now', 'btn nag-btn') rn form.flow_form_close() rn

rn

rn% endblock %rnrn% block last %rn parent() rnrn% endblock %"},"start":"https://users.startribune.com/placement/1/environment/3/nag/start"},"id":"x","count":4,"action":"ignore","mute":true,"action_config":false,"start":"https://users.startribune.com/placement/1/environment/3/x/start","id":"multi-start","count":3,"action":"fly_in","mute":true,"action_config":"location":"bottom_left","slide_direction":"bottom","group_id":null,"display_delay":"0","collapse_delay":"10","template":"

rn

rn

rn

rn u00d7rn

rn

rn

From just

rn

$3.79 99u00a2 a week

rn Save nowrn

rn

rn

","start":"https://users.startribune.com/placement/1/environment/3/multi-start/start"]};

50signs.net © All rights reserved. | Newsphere by AF themes.