Shopping Centers Russia Февраль 2023 | Page 64

Public sale

Entrepreneurs are putting shopping malls up for sale massively via websites. For example, only through «Avito» buyers are being searched for dozens of Moscow malls. SCR editors found out why shopping centre owners sell their properties this way, what are the pros and cons of this strategy, and what are the pitfalls of this kind of sale.

At the beginning of the year there was an announcement on «Avito» about selling the «Nikolsky Passage» for 1,8 billion rubles. Its area is 5 thousand square meters. The building has five floors, excluding the ground floor. There are about 50 men's and women's clothes shops, jewelry stores, service centres. Overall, there are enough tenants in the Nikolsky Passage, though no big names. Mostly, it includes clothing, cosmetics and housewares. The building was originally built in 1917. It was reconstructed over 20 years ago under Luzhkov.

Such sales are common in the regions as well. For instance, in autumn «Avito» was used for selling the «Galaktika» mall in Krasnodar. The area of the centre is more than 162 thousand square meters. In summer, via a well-known online service people tried to sell the shopping and leisure centre «Torgovy Kvartal» in Kaluga.

According to the Regional Director of the Department of Retail Real Estate NF Group Evgenia Khackberdieva, there are several sales channels of commercial real estate — it may be specialized companies, agencies, which have already worked their base out and built relationships with the owners, and online services («Avito», «Cian»), tenders and auctions.

«Ads for the sale of the mall often flash in the announcements on websites. There is nothing surprising about that. It might be an accident from an unqualified manager who did not find a better option. But it could also be a calculated strategy, since such ads are closely watched by all members of the market, including minor investors, agents, etc. Someone may draw attention to such offers. However, usually the sales channels of the shopping malls are different: they apply to specialized funds, directly to investors or international brokers» says Alexander Nazarov, CEO of Nazarov&Partners (Novosibirsk).

Buyers of shopping centres are looking for on «Avito»

Massive sell-off

The selling of shopping centres in major Russian cities began in the pandemic and is still ongoing. Recently, the Sfera shopping mall on the New Arbat Avenue, near the White House, was up for sale again: it was sold for 2,1 billion rubles.