My Development Director Tim Greene and I recently attended the Orlando Retailer One-on-One. It was a very good networking event, a good opportunity to reconnect with colleagues, and most importantly a good chance to figure our where we all stand heading into mid-2013.
After the conference, as Tim and discussed the event our take-away was this: time to gear up. Retailers are getting serious about expanding again and there are definitely deals to be made. What a relief from just a few short years (months?) ago when developers were rebuilding balance sheets, lenders were taking government bailouts, and the majority of retailers had put all expansion plans on the shelf.
In what important ways will it be different this time? The era of irrational exuberance is over. Not everybody survived the contraction. Those who have survived are leaner, more focused, and ready to perform profitably in the future.