Will Glasgow Reporter

Will writes on subjects from retail to media, politics, entrepreneurialism, science and technology. He previously worked for The Australian Financial Review in Sydney and Canberra.

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Shopping centre winners and losers in 2012

Published 20 December 2012 06:02, Updated 27 December 2012 00:51

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Shopping centre winners and losers in 2012

Ups and downs: Key cutters and shoe and watch repairers had a bumper 2012, topping speciality categories in shopping centres anchored by a department store (left). Right, the bottom 10. Source: Urbis Retail Averages 2012

And the winner is ... key, shoe and watch repairs. They were the fastest-growing businesses in shopping centres anchored by a department store in 2011-12, according to the 2012 Urbis Retail Averages report.

The report offers a revealing snapshot of the changing mix of stores in Australian shopping centres. Turnover for services – such as repair shops, optometrists, and hair and beauty – grew at a faster rate than the centre average. Cafe and restaurant revenue also grew strongly, as did children’s clothing.

Those business that are shrinking – in revenue and often floorspace – are the ones most under threat by online competition: music, video and games stores, furniture and hardware stores, bookshops and film processing centres.

Interestingly, electrical, sound and computer stores had strong revenue growth (up 20 per cent), while the amount of space they leased shrank (down 14 per cent). Urbis director of property and economics Ian Shimmin said this revealed the gulf in the sector, with Apple stores, for example, thriving at the same time that many of its competitors have struggled.

The survey was based on data from 57 centres, which had a combined 4.9 million square metres of retail floorspace and $29.4 billion of sales. Average turnover at the centres was $515.5 million in 2011-12, up from $515.0 million in 2010-11.

Bigger CBD centres and smaller sub-regional centres were excluded from the category. Regional centres are defined as those anchored by a department store but not in the CBD.