Another interesting article appeared today on rent relief at shopping centers.
Apparently Starbucks has had success in receiving concessions from landlords, in its quest to lower rents by as much as 25% at some of its locations. Additionally, jeweler Zale Corp. earlier this week joined the ranks of retailers looking to catch breaks, and we wrote about Charming Shoppes’ strategy yesterday.
ICSC’s RECon meeting last week in Las Vegas was interesting because of the different viewpoints we received on this subject. Many landlords told us that they weren’t negotiating with tenants and were insulted with form letters they were getting asking them for relief when the particular stores in question were doing fine.
Others, particularly William Taubman of Taubman Centers, claimed that anyone saying they weren’t giving concessions was lying. We also spoke with Matthew Bordwin, a managing director at KPMG Corporate Finance who is helping Blockbuster try to renegotiate. He told us that rent concessions could prevent Circuit City-like scenarios from happening again.
So should landlords hold their ground against these requests or are they a need in a battered industry right now?