It turns out that in addition to all the U.S. players trying to break into outlet center development in U.S. and Canada, there are European companies who would like to get a piece of the pie. McArthur Glen, a London-based developer, has been building luxury outlet centers in Western Europe for years, in countries including U.K., France, Austria, Germany, Italy and Greece. Later this year, however, the company plans to break ground on an approximately 368,000-sq.-ft. outlet center in Vancouver, the company's first project in North America.
McArthur Glen executives say that because of the difficulty of developing projects in Europe, where the approvals process can take years, they would like to expand into Canada and the U.S. They claim they have no plans to take on the giants of American real estate, but if possible, would like to put their name on the map if appropriatesites (or development partners) come their way.