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Radio Shack shake-up a good thing for shoppers.

It's not exactly surprising that yet another electronics retailer, Radio Shack, is retrenching, announcing earlier this month that it will close 1,100 of its more than 5,000 stores around the United States.

Competition has killed more than one superstore, including Circuit City, and online sales continue to grow. But this isn't a bad thing, particularly here in New York City. A smaller, more focused Radio Shack should have benefits for all.

To be blunt, Radio Shack has a lot of stores, some 100 in the five boroughs, with a particular concentration in some neighborhoods such as Midtown.

Undoubtedly, some of these stores are cannibalizing each other's sales. While we don't know which stores will be closed --the announcement says those decisions will be based on location, demographics, lease length and financial performance--I fully expect to see some 25 to 30 units close in New York.

But we still need small retailers such as this--you're not going to wait until Amazon delivers or brave a superstore like Best Buy when you realize you need a new cable for your Blu-Ray player.

And fear not, landlords of these soon-to-close stores. There's enough demand in the city that you should have no problem finding new tenants, likely at much higher rents! Case in point: even the winter weather hasn't slowed down leasing.

Daniel Cremieux's sportswear, previously found exclusively at department store Dillard's, will have its own boutique at 65 Mercer Street.

Shoe retailer Tani has taken the former Steve Madden Warehouse at 100 Rivington Street. Looking for denim or all things motorcycle? Deth Killers will fill your needs at 348 Broadway.

Annick Goutal will be opening at 397 Bleecker sometime this spring, joining an array of cosmetics and skincare brands that have set up shop on the street.

Porsche Design will move a store triple its former size at 501 Madison Avenue. Michael's Arts & Crafts' second location in Manhattan will be at 675 Sixth Avenue. Design Within Reach finally opened its studio at 957 Third Avenue. The new Home of the Brave features home furnishings from the owners of Wolves Within at 67 West Street in Greenpoint.

At press time, electronics retailer Micro Center was to open at 850 Third Avenue in Sunset Park. A. Cheng is moving from the East Village to 466 Bergen Street, formerly Eponymy.

Green is the theme for this month's calendar. NYCREW's next Industry Spotlight will salute both Women's History Month and our ever-changing planet.

"Women Greening NYC: Sustainability in Commercial Real Estate" will feature a panel of outstanding experts in green initiatives talking about about the benefits and challenges of making our buildings cost-efficient and safe for the environment.

The event will be held Tuesday, March 25 from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the offices of Ted Moudis Associates, 79 Madison Avenue. Amelia Janisz, CEO and president of Environmental Health & Building Safety (and a NYCREW member) will moderate a panel consisting of Charlotte Matthews, Vice President of Sustainability for Related Cos.; Sukanya Paciorek, Senior Vice President of Corporate Sustainability of Vomado Realty Trust, and Eleni Reed, Chief Greening officer of the US GSA Public Buildings Service. To register, visit www.nycrew.org.

Those of you who have registered for RECon, the annual International Council of Shopping Centers conference in Las Vegas, save the date--the CREW Breakfast is back! (I'm on the board of both CREW and NYCREW.)

The breakfast, to be held Monday, May 19 from 7:30 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. will feature guest speaker Jean Chatzky, Financial Editor for NBC's Today Show and best-selling author.

A terrific way networking event for CREW members and all, this breakfast was always a highlight of the conference, and we're all delighted it's back on the schedule. For more information, and to register for RECon, visit http://reconlasvegas.icsc.org/2014RECON/index.php.

By Faith Hope Consolo, chairman Retail Sales, Leasing and Marketing, Douglas Elliman
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Title Annotation:Insiders Outlook
Comment:Radio Shack shake-up a good thing for shoppers.(Insiders Outlook)
Author:Consolo, Faith Hope
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Date:Mar 12, 2014
Words:656
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