External shopping centers growth in Sweden

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Big gets bigger. Shopping centers and retail parks in Sweden continues to increase in number, area and sales and zeros remain a significant part of Swedish retail. The biggest growth is in external trade areas and regional centers in the outskirts of large cities.

This is the conclusion from the annual updated survey of Swedish shopping centers and commercial areas directed by HUI Research, Datscha and NCSC.

The survey shows a continued expanding portfolio of shopping centers and retail parks, which to date amounts to 358 units. The total leasable area of shopping centers and commercial areas continues to increase and now stands at 8.5 million square meters. Shopping centers’ share of total retail sales in recent years has hovered around 35 percent.

Other trends include a continued focus on dining and service. Gym and playground are increasingly common feature which contributes to the transformation of venues for meeting places.

”No shopping center death is in sight. So far this year nine new shopping centers and retail parks opened and just now over 40 projects totaling over 700,000 square meters”, says Lena Larsson, CEO of HUI Research.

The largest trading area in Sweden continues to be Kungens Kurva in the south of Stockholm followed by Barkarby west of Stockholm and Erikslund in Västerås. The survey shows that a large part of the growth in retail sales belongs this kind of major trade areas and regional centers located near major cities.

Currently, several major projects, such as Söderslätt in Umeå where IKEA and Ikano build a new shopping center with a connecting Ikea store, the mall Boulevard in Kristianstad, which is being built on with further steps, and last but not least, the Mall of Scandinavia, scheduled to open in September next year . The shopping center market has been particularly active this year with thirty ownership changes, writes HUI Research.

International interest in Sweden remains high but there is also a strong domestic market.