Emporia-effect on city centers much smaller than expected in Skåne

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Emporia, Mobilia, Väla and other venues lifted the trade in southern Sweden last year.
At the same time, the effect on city centers were minimal.
“I’m surprised because I thought it would be much worse,” says Göran Höckert at Fastighetsägarna Syd.

Property owners association Fastighetsägarna Syd has made their annual survey of 13 city centers in the south of Sweden to see how the retail trade has evolved over the last year.

“On average the  city centers lost 2.1 percent of total retail sales, while grocery trade increased. These figures remind us every year that we need to further develop the city centers through cooperation “, says Göran Höckert, trade policy spokesperson for Fastighetsägarna Syd.

So it is consumer durables that have had the toughest in the city centres. Partly because of the generally poor performance in 2013, but also because of the addition of retail space outside the cities in Skåne. The survey also includes Växjö and Karlshamn outside Skåne.

In the smaller cities, high numbers are usually explained by a particular store that has opened or closed. So even in the larger cities in Skåne, where the closure of Domus in Kristianstad gave a tap in the grocery trade at 33 percent. Since then it has opened a new Coop Extra, meaning growth will be significant next year.

But for Malmö, Helsingborg and Kristianstad the conclusion is that the city centers manage quite well, despite indications to the contrary.

Malmö city dropped 4.1 percent in durables, Helsingborg city centre 2.2 percent and Kristianstad city centre 1.4 percent. While the full municipalities were increasing sales of consumer durables entire with +1.2 percent, +4.7 percent and 0.0 percent. The national average is 1.0 percent.

“Such competition as we now have in Skåne, I think we barely have anyone else. Emporia and also Mobilia affects mainly southwestern Skåne. So I had really thought that the figures for Malmö City would be worse. And then you should be aware that Entré in this alone accounts for 30 million of the total loss of 140, “says Göran Höckert.

He points out that Malmö’s trade has grown substantially over the past five years and that we will probably see further shifts towards the café and restaurant sector.

Helsingborg has one of the strongest trade areas in Sweden in Väla. There has been much talk about the problems in the city centre, but the city centre is growing strongly in the grocery (8.4%) and Göran Höckert says there is a difference between northern and southern Helsingborg. A deeper analysis also shows that café and restaurant industry compensate really good for Helsingborg city centre.

Kristianstad city centre was in big parts a construction site in 2013, which should lead to a revival next year.

Entrepreneurs Syd will also appeal the dismissive when it comes to protest against the new external trade C4 Kristianstad.

“We are authorized to appeal and need to get a juridicial review of the local plan. There are court decisions that are to be regarded as a precedent,”, said Göran Höckert.