Malls Mauled in The Next Big Thing

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Aldo Lipari, luxury goods veteran, has steered a career through brands like Benetton, Giorgio Armani, GUCCI and BALLY.

There are endless choices out there. From a mind-boggling array of detergents to breathtaking creativity in jewellery, watches and even art. It seems that the retail industry just keeps growing and going.

However, it comes as no surprise that with the advent of our friendly information super highway, the Internet, browsing in a store takes on a whole new meaning when you can literally choose to buy almost anything in the world by just fishing out your mobile phone.

This poses all kinds of challenges to retailers who have generally been enjoying burgeoning business over the last four decades of materialistic consumerism.

Though that sentiment of wanting to acquire more, as the developed world enjoys the benefits of more and more product offerings in the market place, hasn’t quite subsided, the Internet has made it even easier for the needy to indulge in retail therapy at the very instant they need it.

The last shopping mall to be built in the USA was in 2006, eight years ago, as it became increasingly clear that with the trend of malls closing down in the suburban areas, there is not much business sense in constructing more such monoliths. Mainstay department stores such as Sears
and JC Penny in the suburban areas are closing down at an alarming rate, which in turn affects the surrounding stores, leading to the closure of entire malls.

Thankfully, that only means that the retail industry is ready for its next step of evolution.

Contrary to the “Multi-channel, (“Multi” meaning “More”), the next big thing in retailing will be the merger of All channels. The Omnichannel
(“Omni” meaning “All”) will be able to offer both shopping experiences of being physically present in the cities and connected with the customers at the same time.

This will mean fewer malls in time to come.

Aldo Lipari is a panelist in STORM’s event Keep It Going: The Next Big Thing in 2014. View more details of the event in Keep It Going 2014.

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This is part of a STORM series:
The Next Big Thing — The plans are in place, the path has been plotted. Before you hit the launch button, you should ask yourself if you are doing so in a bubble. With the world increasingly interconnected, many decisions we make in business and in life are often influenced by other factors beyond what we see in our near field of vision. Sometimes, they come hurtling in like missiles from afar, out of the blue.

Look out for more stories in this series.
Malls Mauled (Aldo Lipari, Global Luxury Goods Chief Executive)
New Levels Of Existence (Er. Chong Kee Sen, President, The Institution of Engineers, Singapore)
Moving Targets And Goals (Herbert Vongpusanachai, Senior Vice President & Managing Director, DHL Express Singapore)
Shaping Our Living Spaces (Dr Stephen Riady, Chairman OUE Ltd.)
Homemade Electricity (Anand Prakash, Partner, FE Global Clean Energy Corp.)
The Price Of Success (Ruici Tio, Director, Kroll)
The Digital Universe Of Opportunities (Eric Goh, Managing Director, EMC Singapore)
Data In Flight (Tom Callow, CEO OAG)
More Than Baby Steps (Tan Wee Keng, CEO Tollyjoy Baby Products Pte Ltd.)
The Rise Of The Old And Wise (Dr Tan Bee Wan)
Virtually Hailing A Cab (Jianggan Li, CEO, Easy Taxi)

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