Omaxe has been part of the retail real estate vertical since 2002, when they opened their first mall in Gurgaon, Sohna Road. This was shortly followed by the construction of many more malls in the country, taking the number count to 15. Most of these malls are fully ready and operational too. In conversation with Shopping Centre News Sanjeev Sharma,AVP-Head Leasing at Omaxe Ltdtalks about the new projects of Omaxe and what kind of expectations they have from the Indian retail real estate industry.
Q. How has the journey been so far for Omaxe Malls?
The journey for us has been good so far and there were many key learnings along the way. In this sector, there are challenges that you need to encounter every day and that makes it a dynamic sector to be in. Recession in between did a lot of correction and changed our mindset in more precise ways to run the show successfully. Like other builders, Omaxe too learned a lot during that phase, which made us take several preventive and corrective measures to ensure real experience of profitable business for our partners.
Q. How many malls do you have in total and in which cities?
We have 15 malls having presence in Delhi, Greater Noida, Gurgaon, Patiala, Ludhiana, Amritsar, and Agra.
Q. Please share details of the total built-up area of your malls. Also, tell us about the GLA for each mall.
Omaxe at Connaught Place and Greater Noida is spread across 1.9 million sq.ft. and 1.6 million sq.ft., respectively. Our office space is around 1.8 lakh sq.ft. and our hotel is 1.8 lakh sq.ft.
Q. In general, what is the parking space in square feet that you allot in your malls? How is the parking space designed?
We have allotted 4 lakh sq.ft. for parking area with flexibility of hydraulic parking for future expansion.
Q. What is the mix of local retail brands vs. international brands? Who are the key vanilla players in your malls?
We have 30 per cent international and 70 per cent national brands. The key players include names like Easyday, Marks & Spencer, Nike, Reebok, Global Desi, And, Meena Bazar, Woodland, United Colors of Benetton, all Madura brands, KFC, Pizza Hut, Costa Coffee, Dominos, McDonald’s, Showtree, Cafe Coffee Day, Levi’s, Funky Kingdom, SRS Cinemas, Planet Sports and many more.
Q. Do have any FEC zone in your malls?
Yes, we have the FEC concept in a big way, especially in our 1.9 million sq.ft mall Omaxe Connaught Place, which has been designed to provide delightful experience in what is India’s only indoor theme based shopping mall. We strongly believe in FEC concept based malls, which is a sure-shot mantra to run successful malls.
Q. What kind of rental revenue model do you have with your tenants?
It is a mix and flexible model. The final model depends on many factors considering the suitability and profitability of both the parties.
Q. Which is your best performing mall and why?
The Patiala Mall, which is situated at the centre of the city, is our best performing mall. It has huge catchment, which is the main USP of the mall. The mall is packed with a great mix of brands with the right kind of vanilla and anchors. We also hold regular events on all important dates, which help us establish strong bond with the immediate catchment.
Q. What is the catchment area that your malls plan to target?
Wherever we are, we try to attract the whole city but in our Greater Noida mall and Omaxe at Connaught Place, we are trying to pull in domestic as well international consumers.
Q. What kind of footfalls do your malls receive?
We receive around 20,000 customers a day.
Q. How do you think is it possible for mall owners to justify their investment and revenues, with the rise in inflation, increasing cost of living and growing cost of infrastructure?
One must keep everything at arm’s length and choose the best location in the city for development work. A successful mall gives three times more value. Most importantly, think about long-term investment.
Q. Do you think there is enough land space for million sq.ft. malls in India?
There is enough land available in India for shopping malls. However, their sky-high costs are a major concern. A million-sq.ft. mall can sustain itself quite well depending on the USP of the mall. Now it is time to think and act as per the requirements of the end users. We have to create something different to keep the customer engaged. The suburbs are a perfect area to create destination malls and these will generate a lot of footfalls during the weekends. It would club as a place to hang around, shop and seek edutainment.
Q. Tell us about Omaxe’s first indoor theme park based shopping mall.
Omaxe Connaught Place Mall is slated to be India’s first indoor theme based mall where families and friends can come together for entertainment coupled with edutainment. In addition, they can shop and enjoy delicacies at the food court. We have put everything in place to attract domestic as well as international tourists to the mall. The mall is slated to become operational by December, 2014.