REAL ESTATE

Thor Equities acquires first Canadian property, in Montreal

BY Katherine Boccaccio

New York — Thor Equities has expanded its international portfolio by acquiring a retail property at 777 Saint Catherine Street in Montreal. The historical building is located on the corner of McGill College Avenue and Saint Catherine Street, in the heart of Montreal’s prime shopping corridor.

“Montreal is the perfect example of a vibrant urban marketplace where we see tremendous value moving forward,” said Joseph Sitt, CEO of Thor Equities. 777 Saint Catherine Street is a three-level building with an additional two below-ground levels. It features 20,000 sq. ft. of retail space, currently occupied by Banana Republic, and an additional 6,000 sq. ft. of office space.

Saint Catherine Street features some of the city’s most well-known shops, restaurants and retailers. Its location near several public transportation hubs makes it easily accessible for residents, visitors and tourists. Neighboring retailers include Apple, H&M, Lululemon and many more.

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REAL ESTATE

Cost Plus World Market to open second New Jersey store

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Shrewsbury, N.J. — Cost Plus World Market, a division of Bed, Bath & Beyond, has secured a new 15,000-sq.-ft. space at 490 Broad Street, Shrewsbury, New Jersey. It is the retailer’s second store in the New Jersey area (Monmouth County), having opened its first Northeast store in July 2014 at 530 W. Mt. Pleasant Avenue in Livingston, New Jersey (Essex County).

Jerry Welkis, a principal of Welco Realty, and David Townes, Leasing Agent of Welco Realty, represented the landlord, MCP Associates, LP, in leasing the present Annie Sez store in Rt. 35 in Shrewsbury.

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MARKETING/SOCIAL MEDIA

Ikea gets smart with furniture

BY Dan Berthiaume

Conshohocken, Pa. – It may not be quite as cool as a shoe phone or a “Cone of Silence,” but Ikea is getting smart with furniture. Specifically, the retailer is releasing a line of “Smart Home” bedroom tables and lamps that will include built-in wireless charging spots for mobile devices.

The furniture will need to be plugged in, but users can simply rest mobile devices on specially marked spots for wireless charging. Ikea will also sell wireless charging pads that customers can use with existing Ikea furniture they have already purchased.

According to Ikea, the Smart Home furniture will help consumers reduce the clutter of cables for charging various wireless devices in their home. Interestingly, Ikea is using the Qi wireless standard used on some Android and Windows phones, but not the market-leading iPhone. However, Ikea will sell charging covers for iPhones and older models of the Samsung Galaxy, which do not use Qi.

"People hate cable mess,” said Jeanette Skjelmose, manager of lighting and wireless charging, Ikea. “They worry about not finding the charger and running out of power. Our new innovative solutions, which integrate wireless charging into home furnishings, will make life at home simpler."

Ikea will start selling Smart Home furniture in the U.S., U.K. and Europe in April.

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