Swedish property developer and investor AMF Fastigheter has hinted that it would love to attract an Apple Store to Stockholm.
The firm is currently working on a planned overhaul of their Gallerian and MOOD shopping centers in the Swedish capital. Malls.com caught up with Elisabet Jones, who is the company’s Head of Retail Leasing.
She confirmed to us that they have some very exciting plans for these popular malls. MOOD Stockholm she described as being located in the “hipster area, the cooler part of Stockholm”. This setting is reflected in the center’s design, with low ceilings, small stores and a trendy vibe running through it. The big chains are notable by their absence from this mall, helping add to the cool, modern image.
The success of MOOD Stockholm has led to AMF Fastigheter planning a further development, which is called MOOD District. This has come about because the property developer has bought the blocks around the original center and is planning on “turning MOOD Stockholm inside out”. What this means is that they want to make the parts that are currently inside more exposed and more visible. The end result will be a mall with the flagship corner units that aren’t very common in Stockholm.
The other big project that Elisabet mentioned to us concerns the successful Gallerian shopping center, which is located fairly close to MOOD. This mall was opened in 1976 and underwent the last major refurbishment in 2011. At this point a Hollister store was added along with other new tenants and she pointed out that this is now the second best performing Hollister store in Europe.
Gallerian has been described as the firm’s mainstream shopping mall and it is also about to undergo some big changes. The previous tenant in the office space was SwedBank but with the bank now moving out, AMF Fastigheter are taking the opportunity to add 2 hotels to the center.
Additionally, 40,000 square feet of office space is being added to the Gallerian complex. This will allow the number of office workers there to stay the same even when the new hotels take over from the banking headquarters.
In terms of visitors, the numbers are reported to be on the increase in the MOOD mall, which has been opened for 2 and a half years and is regularly seeing monthly footfall increases of between 11% and 17%. The more established Gallerian center is currently seeing footfall figures decrease although spend is increasing. Overall, Gallerian sees 18 million visitors each year.
In terms of retail trends in Sweden, Elisabet confirmed that “food and beverage is rocketing”, although she feels that the offer at Gallerian needs to be improved. The addition of the new hotels there will add restaurants and meeting places, which “is a trend that we definitely see”. Another trend she discussed with us is the way that brands want to markets through pop ups, to test the market.
As for the visitors to the company’s main centers, the majority are from other parts of Sweden, Norway, Finland, Russia and Germany. The fact that MOOD and Gallerian are so well situated close to the main attractions in Stockholm means that they are popular with tourists looking to soak up the sights in the Swedish capital.
The marketing at AMF Fastigheter was described to us by Elisabet as being “quite local”. A good example comes with the tram line that runs through the city and has advertising for MOOD on one side and for Gallerian on the other. Another marketing initiative has seen the malls advertised on the Stockholm City Bikes vehicles.
Looking to the future, the plan is to try and expand both centers wherever possible, as the success of both of them has led to lots of new brands wanting to join. The kind of brands they are after as those that are “just a little bit above the mainstream… and of course Stockholm city needs an Apple store.”