Established in the early ‘50s, Trehan Builders has over 6 decades of unparalled experience in the field of construction. The group has executed prestigious projects for CPWD, DDA and PWD across Delhi-NCR and delivered over 10 million square feet in Delhi, Gurgaon as well as in Bangalore.
Abhishek Trehan, Executive Director, Trehan Group spoke to IMAGES Retail about the current state of the retail real estate industry in India and the position of upcoming malls in the country.
What, in your opinion, is the current state of the real estate industry in India, focusing on the lockdown and unlock phase?
Unfortunately, the real estate sector was amongst the top loss bearers during the lockdown. Going forward, things have started getting slightly better in the last three months. Adding to this, the Government has announced a few measures to boost the affordable housing segment in the Union Budget, which will aid the growth.
What changes/learnings have you taken from the pandemic from an upcoming mall’s perspective?
Giving priority to sanitisation and health of the customers is the first basic learning in this situation. Another common practice is to ensure social distancing, by placing markings on the floors and elevators. Technology is the future, and one needs to be dynamic enough to cope with the changing environment. The engagement has to happen at both malls and tenants digitally and offline.
How are you dealing with construction, leasing, revenue, and manpower wrt the current crisis situation?
This is the best time to create a strong team, especially since most companies are working towards increments, incentives and bonuses. The retail industry has slowed down in the leasing department, but structured deals are still taking place. The retail sector is very optimistic of bouncing back by the end of 2021.
Consumer shopping behaviour is set to change a lot, as is consumption post-COVID and lockdown. Will it make an impact on your future retail mix?
Our mall IRIS Broadway, Gurugram is a convenient, one-stop neighbourhood destination for over 4 lakh people. It is the chosen centre in the whole area due to its location, ease of parking, brand mix and our exclusive brand mix only available to them in the immediate 5 km radius. We are fortunate to have footfalls and spending returns to near normal due to our unique positioning as the only focused neighbourhood high-street with convenience, F&B, entertainment in the whole vicinity.
We are focusing on our original plan to get all value for money driven players vailable in central shopping hubs to this vicinity and are very confident we will make this one of our landmark projects.
Will you consider shifting to a revenue-sharing model with your tenants after the launch?
Yes, as the retail industry is coming back to its feet, tenants require hand-holding and supportive structured deals to ride this difficult period through. We are helping them with revenue share deals to get across the first period of inception, and then depending on the product we offer, rolling MG’s and staggered rents to help them achieve a win-win scenario operating out of the mall.
What are the brands that have confi rmed their availability so far in your mall? How many have been added recently after the unlock phase?
We have INOX, Reliance smart, Haldiram, KFC, Pizza Hut and Mango Select hotels already confirmed before the COVID times. Recently we have signed new leases with McDonald’s drive-through, Chaayos & Funky Island. We are in the deal finalisation stage with a very big digital anchor and a value-driven apparel anchor, three hair salons, and few prominent F&B players.