Stuart has over 26 years’ experience within the property and finance industries. Prior to joining MacroPlan, Stuart led the Urban Development Program for the Western Australian Department of Planning, which addressed residential, industrial and commercial land and infrastructure development across the state’s high growth urban centres. Stuart has established himself as a leading industry expert in; strategic urban planning and regional economic development, infrastructure coordination, feasibility assessments, infrastructure coordination, urban master planning and, policy research and development. Contact Stuart McKnight, General Manager – Western Australia, today to discuss your property research requirements.
Over 100 people from the property and development industry in Brisbane gathered for an informative evening workshop in April. Hosted by The Urban Developer in association with MacroPlan, the workshop featured our own Managing Director of Retail, Tony Dimasi, speaking on the forces shaping trends in retail, along with renowned ‘foodie’ Francis Loughran from Future Food, as well as developer Matthew Creagh from Marquette.
The Urban Developer organised a sensational venue in the Coco Republic store in Fortitude Valley, which combined with a high quality of content provided the ideal mix of food for the brain and a feast for the senses.
Guests were drawn from across the industry and included a number of high net worth developers along with industry consultants, centre managers and other professionals with an interest in retail and shopping centre performance.
MacroPlan’s Senior’s and Ageing in South East Queensland Workshop, hosted by Grant Thornton Australia last Wednesday was a sold out event with over 100 clients and colleagues from the property and aged care industry. Attendees heard from, Ross Elliott - Senior Business Advisor from MacroPlan, Darrel Price – Head of Corporate Finance from Grant Thornton Australia and Alison Quinn – CEO from RetireAustralia, who delivered engaging presentations that included a mix of statistical content and narrative to give guests an understanding of the future of the retirement market.
First speaker Ross Elliot identified demographics which characterise the retirement market, specifically low average incomes and wealth levels. With rising life expectancy and declining percentage of life spent at work (50% for a male born in 2000 compared to 69% for a male born in 1950), it is becoming more and more difficult, and even unrealistic, for the average person to retire comfortably. One of the more surprising points raised was; the poverty rate of retirees across Australia, which is higher than many developed countries, and even developing countries such as Mexico.
Darrell Price explored the megatrends facing the retirement property market, including increasing cost pressure on Government support, the prediction of a disaggregation between aged accommodation and aged care, and the need to increase the density of retirement and aged care accommodation. Price emphasised the opportunities and challenges that could arise from the increasing penetration rate of retirement living, including the potential market for high density retirement accommodation within CBD locations across Australia, and the interstate movement from NSW and VIC towards South East Queensland.
Alison Quinn of RetireAustralia rounded out the afternoon’s content by presenting her extensive knowledge of the retirement sector. She emphasised the capacity of QLD and Australian residents to engage in retirement and aged care accommodation products, and the need to innovate aged care products and widen the options available in order to better fulfil consumers’ aged care needs. Allison explored the rise of decentralised, consumer directed care, which is expected to create more tailored solutions for home and aged care services, as well as placing significant downward pressure on profit margins for aged care providers. She also discussed the blurring of retirement market product categories (I.e. retirement villages, home care and residential aged care), and the distinct undersupply of retirement and aged care accommodation in the marketplace, due to upward pressure on land prices from developers of other, more profitable land uses such as residential development.
Once the workshop had concluded, guests enjoyed the opportunity to network with other attendees.
MacroPlan thanks Grant Thornton for hosting the seminar and for their ongoing support across a range of MacroPlan event initiatives.
The dramatic growth in food retailing in Australia, a consumer trend not being replicated anywhere else in the world, is helping to shape the big expansions planned for WA’s shopping centre industry.
In an address to the Property Council, MacroPlan retail managing director Tony Dimasi said in the past 20 years, retail spending valued at $20 billion had moved out of non-food and into the food sector with take-home food and catered foods in now accounting for 55¢ in the retail dollar, up from 48¢.
“This is a peculiarly Australian thing and you don’t see this anywhere else in major comparisons of shopping centres where food plays such an important part and an increasingly important part,” Mr Dimasi said.
Planning restrictions that stymied WA shopping centre expansions were lifted six years ago and planned building projects to add 400,000sqm of floor space across major centres during the next four or five years will require about $3.5 billion in capital expenditure.
“Retail sales are being held up in the whole country by the manic growth in food sales. The food story is amazing, particularly in retail developments and in shopping centres,” Mr Dimasi said.
Despite the downturn in retail sales and the food sector, Mr Dimasi told the gathering there was not a strong correlation between the mining boom and the health of the retail sector. “In WA, retail sales recorded growth of 6.2 per cent per annum in the 12 years before the mining boom, 6.5 per cent per annum during the boom,” he said.
In the seven months to January, WA saw growth of 2 per cent in total retail sales, which was made up of 3.5 per cent growth for clothing and apparel, 5 per cent for furniture, floor coverings and the homeware sector, 3.7 per cent for liquor, while cafes and restaurants declined 5 per cent. “Overall, the fortunes of retailing are not as directly linked to the mining sector as some would have you believe and even during period of adjustment, which I think we are in the middle of, retail is still growing,” Mr Dimasi said.
Shopping city: An artist’s impression of the proposed expansion of Westfield Innaloo centre
While the influence of traditional retailers was waning, Mr Dimasi said the supply of retail floor space had been given a shot in the arm from the arrival of international retailers.
“These fast-fashion retailers have been the most dramatic change to retail supply in this country for quite some time,” he said.
“Traditional retailers had been the backbone of major shopping centres during the 1990s and pre-GFC but had been hit by a perfect storm, deflation in apparel prices, entry of very sexy new global entrants, and of course, post-GFC, the downturn in demand.”
The industry gathering was told Australia’s biggest shopping centres in the Eastern States had doubled in size in the past 20 years, from an average of 67,000sqm to 134,000sqm.
“The bigger shopping centres are able to react in all sorts of ways, they are able to stay relevant to consumers, food and international retailers,” Mr Dimasi said.
The total investment proposed for the three Westfield centre expansions in Perth — Carousel, Whitford City and Innaloo — is more than $1 billion.
AMP Capital divisional development manager Scott Nugent said plans were being finalised for expansion of Garden City and Karrinyup shopping centres. When finished, the average size of specialty shops would increase from 80sqm to 120sqm.
“We are not going to see more shops but we will see shops providing a bigger range,” Mr Nugent said.
About MacroPlan:MacroPlan’s experienced and qualified retail economists align their understanding of macro-economic forces with micro-economic variables such as geographic and industrial characteristics, demographics, labour market shifts, resource demand and commercial realities. Contact James Turnbull, National Head of Retail today to discuss your retail property research requirements.
Infrastructure and logistics executives from all around Australia, and further afield including the USA, Belgium, and the Netherlands, gathered to hear about a wide variety of industry issues in Sydney earlier this month.
Held at the Royal Randwick racecourse, 250 delegates to the Australian Logistics Council Forum 2016 heard from politicians, rail executives, port CEOs, lawyers, air freight managers, bureaucrats and many more.
Topics discussed included the “State of Play” by the Hon Duncan Gay, NSW Minister for Roads, Maritime & Freight; Infrastructure Australia’s 15 Year Plan; industry executives such as Maurice James of Qube; and port CEOs such as Marika Calfas, Geoff Crowe and Roy Cummins.
Panel discussions were also very interesting including those on “ports and intermodal terminals,” and “the dynamics of port supply chains”.
Among the most interesting sessions included some reflections by Mr James on (some of) the reasons why Qube wants Patrick; David Irwin, director at Pacific National outlining the dire fate of freight on rail if the Inland Rail does not go ahead; and, also a particularly tense and testy session when logistics executives got angry after they formed the view that the investment fund managers were being disloyal to Australia by refusing to back infrastructure projects in this nation.