Commercial property and business needs to respond to change

  • Opinion
  • June 30, 2015
  • Paul Keane
Commercial property and business needs to respond to change

A trip to Greece is an exhilarating experience: history, food, culture, sun and casualness.  Having been there three times, I have enjoyed the escape and the traditions it has to offer. About five years ago on a visit to Greece, we again decided to visit the Acropolis.

It’s an ancient citadel, located on a high rocky outcrop above the city of Athens. The Acropolis contains several ancient buildings of great architectural and historic significance, of which the most famous is the Parthenon. It’s a must visit if you’re in Athens. It’s quite breathtaking and the lights at night are something to behold as they cascade over the ruins of Ancient Greece.

On that visit, we just walked up into the Acropolis, right through the entry gates, along with dozens of other like tourists. It subsequently occurred to us that there was no charge for entry, but discussion proved that staff had been sacked due to them pilfering entry proceeds. As a result the entry stations were abandoned and tourists were getting in for free.

This is not a travel story, it is an analogy.

We can learn from the Greek economy

Greece as a country has had a very young entry level for retirement, with very generous superannuation to retirees. Working is not encouraged, it is very much a casual approach to life with little or no energy required by individuals. As a consequence, it is normal for the economy to be under threat.

The current economic debacle could threaten the long term future of the country, and by the time this opinion piece gets online, the country could be bankrupt. The impact on Europe and the Euro could be significant, and New Zealand will not escape the potential economic tsunami that may follow. 

But why has this happened? It’s all about not taking the bad medicine when one needs to. Greece has lived off social funding for years and the chickens are finally coming home to roost. What can we learn from this? 

Lessons for an ageing population

The first lesson is for New Zealand to look seriously at the aging population and to control the age for receiving the national superannuation. Times have changed. People are more aware of saving for retirement, and those in their 30s and 40s have the opportunity to save from now for their future. The National Government of the 1970s abandoned the retirement savings scheme and this must not be allowed to happen again, where the future was abandoned for “Think Big” opportunities of the time. Increasing the retirement age is probably well overdue. So where’s the analogy?

Controlling the outcome: Shanton

The closure of the Shanton retail chain, finally announced late last week, is the analogy. None of us can escape from economic pressures, but we can avoid a calamity, and we can control the outcome. Changes in customer behaviour, moving with changing customer aging, recognising demographics that suit your store location, controlling growth and sales, and ensuring profit is king is how to avoid going bust.

It’s really quite simple. The Shanton brand was most recently focussed on the lower socio-economic group, in that the fashion range available was priced to attract that demographic. The problem is that this group has little disposable income and the consequences are that Shanton remained a discount outlet. Probably a case of “too many eggs in one basket”!

Adjusting to the circumstance: RCG

The analogy is also interesting from RCG’s perspective. This company was founded on its retail expertise. We have worked with retail clients from across the retail spectrum for over 25 years. We remain close to retail and retailers. However, we have not ignored the need for adjustment to our business as circumstances change or economic situations also change.

Whilst we pioneered the large format retail experience that evolved in the early 1990s, we have learnt that nothing stays the same and LFR is now not as powerful as it once was in terms of aggressive development.

As a result we have adapted our skills, bringing mixed-use and commercial residential developments within our portfolio, thus ensuring that we continue to grow. As a result our people continue to benefit in changing environments and they have acquired the skills to allow us to continue to develop.

The Greek experience is a lesson for all.  Running a marathon was the epitome of human endeavour in days past, but there are now bigger physical challenges that demand more of us. A quote from that famous Greek Philosopher Aristotle is meaningful: “The roots of education are bitter, but the fruits are sweet”!

​ ​

This is a community discussion forum. Comment is free but please respect our rules:

  1. Don’t be abusive or use sweary type words
  2. Don’t break the law: libel, slander and defamatory comments are forbidden
  3. Don’t resort to name-calling, mean-spiritedness, or slagging off
  4. Don’t pretend to be someone else.

If we find you doing these things, your comments will be edited without recourse and you may be asked to go away and reconsider your actions.
We respect the right to free speech and anonymous comments. Don’t abuse the privilege.


Kiwi Property makes $138m net profit for the year

  • News
  • May 21, 2019
  • Radio New Zealand
Kiwi Property makes $138m net profit for the year

Kiwi Property has reported a strong full year underlying profit, as it continues to reinvest in its Auckland retail and office properties.

Read more

Thankyou’s latest campaign combines scent and charity work

  • News
  • May 21, 2019
  • StopPress Team
Thankyou’s latest campaign combines scent and charity work

Australian charity product organisation Thankyou has launched its latest Kiwi campaign, combining that fact that 100 percent of its profit goes towards helping end global poverty with its use of perfume-grade botanical oils in its products.

Read more

From edible insects to beautiful homeware: Made of Tomorrow’s co-founder talks its new venture

  • Design
  • May 21, 2019
  • Idealog
From edible insects to beautiful homeware: Made of Tomorrow’s co-founder talks its new venture

Most people would be in agreement that bugs, planters and room dividers don’t have much in common, but Matt Genefaas and Dan Craig would beg to differ. The two juggle running an edible insect company, Crawlers, as well as a homeware company, Made of Tomorrow. Genefaas has a chat about what the new furniture range, Space Between, was inspired by, as well as how him and Craig spend their days in slashie roles moving between pushing dried insects to the world, as well as polished mirrors and space dividers.

Read more

Social scoreboard

Zavy and The Register have worked together to create a scoreboard that compares how the top 25 traditional media advertising spenders in New Zealand have performed on social media over the past 30 days, updated in real time.

Regional rollercoaster
What does retail look like in 2019 for ...
Concept to closet
Business coverage of New Zealand Fashion Week.
Town centres
A positive retail environment over the past 12 ...
Amazon Arrival
Keeping up with all things Amazon as it ...
The Retail Yearbook 2017
As we battle our way through the busiest ...
Hospitality enhancing retail
Some think food and integrated hospitality offerings will ...
The future is bright
We spoke with four retailers in their twenties ...
Spotlight on signage
At first glance, the humble in-store sign might ...
Red Awards 2016
The Red Awards for retail interior design celebrate ...
Auckland Unitary Plan
Auckland is changing. The Unitary Plan will decide ...
How to open a store
Sarah Dunn considers what it would take to ...
All things to all people
Kiwi retailers share their omnichannel strategies.
Rising stars
Retail's top young achievers.
Delivering on your promises
The sale isn't over until your item is ...
Retail in heartland New Zealand
Retailers keep the regions pumping, but how strong ...
Women in retail help one another. We spoke ...
The changing face of retail
Shifting demographics are creating big changes in New ...
The retail yearbook
With the help of experts in the retail ...
Retail rogues
We put the spotlight on staff training. Jai ...
Here come the giants
Topshop has arrived in Auckland’s CBD, David Jones ...
From retail to e-tail
Ecommerce has become part of the way mainstream ...
Window shopping: A spotlight on social media
Sarah Dunn and Elly Strang look at how ...
Loyalty in the digital age
How are retailers maintaining loyalty? Sarah Dunn, Elly ...
The Innovators | In partnership with Spark Business
Technology is rapidly changing the retail industry as ...

Why is the next generation so anxious? Here's how young founders can avoid burn-out

  • Opinion
  • May 21, 2019
  • Jennifer Young
Why is the next generation so anxious? Here's how young founders can avoid burn-out

There may be good reason to be concerned about our young entrepreneurs. Millennials and Generation Z have been labelled generation burn-out, generation snowflake and described as narcissistic, entitled, tech-dependent and fragile. They’re also oversaturated with headlines about the raft of issues like climate change they have to tackle, plus concerns about the impact of technology and social media on their mental health. Jennifer Young explores possible reasons why the younger generation is so anxious, as well as what young founders can do to avoid burn-out.

Read more

Vodafone NZ sold to private investors for $3.4b

  • News
  • May 21, 2019
  • Radio New Zealand
Vodafone NZ sold to private investors for $3.4b

Infrastructure investor Infratil is teaming up with a Canadian investment firm to buy the local operations of Vodafone for $3.4 billion.

Read more

Readings present revised plan for Courtenay Central

  • Property
  • May 16, 2019
  • Radio New Zealand
Readings present revised plan for Courtenay Central

The company that owns Courtenay Central in Wellington says it has big plans for redeveloping the complex - which is closed due to earthquake risks.

Read more
Next page
Results for
About us.

The Register provides essential industry news and intelligence, updated daily. And the digital newsletter delivers the latest news to your inbox twice a week — for free!

©2009–2015 Tangible Media. All rights reserved.
Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Privacy policy.

The Register

Content marketing/advertising? Email or call 022 639 3004

View Media Kit