Serbia now has another retail park – Immofinanz officially opens a new Stop Shop facility in Pozarevac tonight. The fifth retail park of this Austrian investor in Serbia, as announced earlier, is worth around EUR 10.5 million and is the first direct foreign investment in Pozarevac after several decades.
Since its arrival to the Serbian market in 2015, Immofinanz has opened four Stop Shop retail parks – in Nis, Cacak, Valjevo and Lazarevac, in addition to the new one in Pozarevac
, which is to be followed by the one in Vrsac
, to be opened by the end of the month. Along with them, the plan also includes Sremska Mitrovica.
During 2017 and the first months of 2018, the trend noticeable in the Serbian market for several years now has continued. Compared to other commercial formats, retail parks are becoming increasingly attractive to both investors and customers. A higher quality offer and strong additional features, characteristic of such centers in Serbia, create an image of towns within towns. The mixed concept, which includes, in addition to stores, restaurants and cafes, movie theaters, playrooms, piazzettas and similar features is what investors are opting for now. This sort of business plan, experts agree, is necessary if one wants to achieve sustainability.
They believe that Serbia is on the rise when it comes to investments in retail parks. As was recently heard at the conference on the development of real estate and infrastructure in Belgrade, the share of retail parks in the total of 712,000 m2 of retail space in Serbia is 36% and is constantly growing.
Another important characteristic of the local market is a careful choice of the location. Unlike certain examples in neighboring countries (such as Croatia, for example), care is taken for there not to be “overlapping” between big players and for the facilities themselves not to be oversized, especially in smaller towns. The practice shows that, instead of taking one big bite, investors often opt for construction in stages. In addition to providing a new place for shopping and entertainment, as well as jobs for a considerable number of people, retail parks have certainly contributed to fully changing the appearance of certain location.