London has reclaimed the number one position as the most targeted market for international retailers, according to the 2012 edition of How Global is the Business of Retail? by leading global property adviser CBRE.
CBRE’s annual survey – now in its fifth year – mapped the global footprint of 326 of the world’s top retailers across more than 200 cities to identify trends in global retail expansion at national and local levels. The report found that retailers expanded into a wide range of markets in 2011, with 74% of the countries in the survey seeing at least one new retailer enter the market last year. The overall global footprint of retailers grew 2.1%, similar to the previous year, demonstrating that retailers continue to grow their cross-border businesses in spite of a challenging consumer environment.
Attracting more than half (55.6%) of all international retail brands surveyed, London reclaims the outright number one position after sharing top spot with Dubai last year. London benefited from a mini-boom in 2011 as tourist spending boosted a relatively robust local economy, and remains a key hub for retailers looking to expand into Europe. The United Kingdom (UK) also retains number one position as the most penetrated global country with 56.7% of retailers in the survey present there.
While Dubai (53.8%) still holds considerable global pulling power, it dropped into second position due to a handful of retailers exiting the market. New York (43.9%) remains in third position, while Moscow (43.2%) moves up the rankings following a number of new market entrants in 2011 to join Paris (43.2%) in fourth position ahead of Hong Kong (40.5%). Kuwait City (39.5%) is another big mover, rising to eighth position from 12th place last year. The remainder of the top 20 comprises a mix of traditional and emerging markets, providing an indication of how global the international retail business really is.