Developer: Amazon ‘great’ for brick-and-mortar retail
The founder and CEO of upscale real estate company Caruso has a somewhat contrarian view when it comes to Amazon.
In an appearance on CNBC’s “Squawk Alley ,” Rick Caruso addressed the so-called “Amazon effect” and shared his belief that the online retailer has actually been “great” for brick-and-mortar business.
Caruso, the only U.S. based developer with two shopping centers (The Grove and The Americana at Brand, in Los Angeles) in the Top 15 in the world based on sales per sq. ft., said he believes that e-commerce companies like Amazon teach retailers how to be more effective and competitive in the marketplace.
He also noted that retail is shifting to a hybrid model as online retailers recognize that “the social interaction with their customer – the sense of discovery and the sense of experience is critical to an overall retail strategy.” The fact that Amazon is opening physical stores “tells us that a hybrid model where you have digital and you have (brick-and-mortar) retail is very important,” Caruso said.
More action must be taken from major retailers and developers to deliver the “full experience” to consumers in physical retail. Amazon constantly markets sales from a box without any experience and we can do better. Michael Sapir, CEO, Sapir Real Estate Development
I’m Michael Sapir, CEO to Sapir Real Estate Development since 2001. I’d like to comment on Mr. Caruso’s understanding of Amazon. During our Real Estate recession Amazon gained a great deal of traction with the millennial generation. Amazon advertises instructional videos on how to order and live your life online away from the physical retail experience. In fact their physical stores are to teach and introduce further a completely online retail lifestyle. We saw this before when catalogs came out except online retail is more interactive and tailors to individuals with autologic programming. I believe the answer to Amazon unlike Caruso is for major retailers; Walmart, Target, CVS and major Developers is to launch an educational , social and cultural media campaign introducing the “full experience” back into retail shopping. Consumers work on computers , use smart devices for most every part of their lives. The shopping experience should be a real physical experience offline to touch, feel , small and socially interact with others. What’s the point of ordering jeans online from Amazon and waiting for a box “if” you NEVER put those jeans on and go out. Most retail outlets offer the human experience and social interaction and entertainment much needed in human life that Amazon can never Deliver in any box. I’m further available for interview. Thank You. Michael Sapir