Outlet malls thrive in a slow economy

From a recent RetailWire discussion of outlet malls and why the concept continues to grow in today’s sluggish economy…I feel a lot of their success is because the concept continues to evolve. Here’s my take:

There are at least three trends that will continue to drive the growth of outlet malls. First (as the article points out), there is plenty of space on the map to add outlet malls in underserved markets. Second, consumers continue to look for value, especially among the national brands front-and-center in a typical outlet mall. Finally, the outlet mall is redefining itself by adding more upscale tenants, big box retailers and even (in the case of Gurnee Mills north of Chicago) a department store tenant when Macys opens its doors next year.



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