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Retail and Property Experts Debate the Key Forces Disrupting Retail Sector

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Experts from the property and retail sectors gathered at an exclusive FutuRetail lunch hosted by Battersea Power Station on Friday 12th June, to discuss the big trends that are leading retailers to reinvent themselves, target new markets and to develop novel new ways to sell to shoppers.

The discussion centred around a preview of the findings of a new report Commerce Disrupters authored by Owen King, Consultant at FutuRetail and sponsored by Visa Europe as part of the ongoing FutuRetail programme.

The report, which will be released later this month, examines the future of global retail, highlighting how the confluence of economic, demographic, technology, urban and consumer trends will disrupt retail over the course of the next few years.   

Owen King, Consultant at FutuRetail explained: “The confluence of these forces present retailers with powerful challenges and opportunities. While the growth of e-commerce will make it easier to sell to shoppers in markets like China, retailers will soon be competing for the attention of consumers in a global marketplace that will make building brand recognition harder.”

Technology might provide retailers with new ways to sell to consumers and understand their customers, but it’s also making shoppers more impatient and demanding. The successful retailers of tomorrow will be those with a clear strategic view of the forces reshaping retail, and those who are able to adapt and respond to these changes today.”

Justin Taylor, Head of Retail at Cushman & Wakefield said: “Increased access to m-commerce is both making the consumers shopping more demanding and shopping patterns more unpredictable. Therefore retail and restaurant occupiers and real estate owners will need to focus upon delivering a seamless omni-channel shopping experience that makes every purchase not only convenient but also a memorable event worth sharing.”

Joanne Skilton, Head of Leasing at Battersea Power Station Development Company said: “Battersea Power Station will be the newest and the largest retail development in central London. The 8.5m sqft new Town Centre brings together many different and innovative uses in both a heritage and waterfront environment which we believe delivers exactly upon the way retail will evolve over time and what both consumers and retailers are looking for. We are therefore delighted to be hosting Futuretail at Battersea.”