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FOS for Thought

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With almost 50 outlets nationwide, Factory Outlet Store or better known as FOS, is no doubt one of the leading clothing retail brands in Malaysia. A force to be reckoned in the domestic scene since 1997, FOS brings much knowledge and experience to the table which may be useful in understanding the mind of big name tenants.

FOS outlets vary in size; they range from 5,000 sq ft up to 10,000 sq ft, it all depends on location and population density. “In high density areas such as in the KL City Centre we tend to be bigger, possibly double or triple the sizes of the outlets in other suburban areas,” FOS shares. Undoubtedly for high profile areas such as in KLCC, a larger store is needed to not only to cater to the crowd but to reflect the brand’s image as well. Nevertheless, mall owners may want to keep in mind that although erecting a shopping center in a prime spot will attract tenants, big name retailers would be deterred if the lot sizes are too small.

Surrounding demographics also play a role. For instance, FOS will not just occupy any lot offered to them just because they target the mass market. Instead, they take great caution in studying the market and even measure the quality of the management team before signing the lease agreement.

Of paramount importance to any retailer is the ability to attract shoppers. The catch is, before the door is even officially opened, more so if it’s a brand new mall, mall owners must first be able to attract quality tenants.

“Overall we as tenants need each other to draw in the crowd. By having a good tenancy mix on each floor, we can have the right customers coming to our store”.

“A good mall will include a good mix of F&B, groceries, clothing and some entertainment outlets to provide a more comprehensive spread for customers.”

The solution is hence not to just mash everyone up but to formulate the best possible combination.

FOS also considers the internal architecture and floor plan of a shopping center, in hopes to find the perfect lot for maximum exposure and attractive enough for retailers to move in. Simultaneously, it must also be well accessible and permeates a pleasant atmosphere for the shoppers.

Beyond the retailer’s walls, external factors such as a good parking system, security and even environment ambience are subjects of discussion, which on hindsight may seem immaterial but can make all the difference to the tenants while they ponder and decide whether or not to move in, to stay out or set sail into the competitor next door.