U.S. retailers continue to up the number of stores they plan to open over the upcoming two-year period, to 83,749, according to National Retailer Demand Monthly Reportfrom RBC Capital. The number represents a year-to-date increase in store opening plans of 2.1 percent.
“tenants, especially franchises, continue to scoop up vacancy among spaces of 5,000 sq. ft. and under, while large box users are struggling to find sufficient space to satisfy planned store openings,” wrote report author and RBC Capital Markets analyst Rich Moore.
Toy stores, men’s clothing stores, hobby stores and pawn shops remained at the top of the list for retailers that plan to grow the most as a percentage of their existing store portfolios. Toy stores, for instance, upped the number of their expected store openings over a 24-month period by 17 percent since December, to 332 from 132.
Men’s apparel sellers, including Jos. A Bank, Destination XL and Brooks Brothers, now plan to open 334 new stores, as opposed to 252 in December. Crafts retailers as a group increased the number of new stores they planned to open by 3 percent during the period, to 195.
Among individual retailers whose store opening plans are making a significant impact on retail REIT’s property portfolios are fast fashion apparel seller Zara, beauty supplies chain Ulta and women’s clothing store Charming Charlie, along with Bed Bath & Beyond, Trader Joe’s, Nordstrom Rack, Joe’s Jeans, Shopko, Buy Buy Baby and The Container Store.