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Recession lessons part 6: David Zoba

June 19, 2020

Past recessions had much different origins than the current one. Contributing editor Anna Robaton spoke with thought leaders from different corners of the industry. Our series on lessons learned during recessions continues with ...

Zoba says:

The same old won’t do anymore

Unlike the prior recessions I’ve lived through, this one wasn’t precipitated by capital shortages, although there will be capital shortages before it’s over. This was a black swan event almost impossible to predict, with a shutdown response that no one could have possibly planned for. But this downturn has fully clarified that we are vastly overbuilt in retail, especially more-of-the-same retail. There will be a washout of tired, marginal, undercapitalized centers and retailers, but there will be winners and survivors. They will be those that embrace change and were already moving towards it by building digital capability in anticipation of the consumers’ increased acceptance of online shopping.

Both centers and retailers need to prepare to meet the newer, savvier consumer the first time they walk into that center or cross into that store. And they had better not disappoint that customer with the same old, or that customer will move on and never come back.

Check out the rest of our Recession lessons series

Part 1: Daniel Hurwitz
Part 2: Norman Kranzdorf
Part 3: Valerie Richardson
Part 4: Yaromir Steiner
Part 5: Dana Telsey

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