Retail Traffic

Tracking Trends at the Trade Expo

The Trade Exposition portion of the annual ICSC Spring Convention promises to be bigger and better than ever before.

The Trade Expo has expanded both its size and hours of operation. ICSC has 358 registered exhibitors on tap for the 2007 event — 28 more than last year. In addition, about 10 percent of the exhibitors are new this year, with companies showcasing everything from outdoor advertising products to machines that produce fake snow.

Both the Trade Expo and Leasing Mall receive a welcome expansion at this year's convention, which runs from May 20 to 23. “The trade show, along with the rest of the show has expanded,” says Patrice Duker, a spokesperson for ICSC. The Leasing Mall has expanded from 1.5 million square feet to 2 million square feet, while the Trade Expo has increased a modest amount — to 134,000 square feet from 130,000 square feet. ICSC has also expanded the operating hours for the Trade Expo, which will be open Sunday, May 21 from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.; and Monday and Tuesday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Convention-goers will need to navigate more booths and a slightly different layout than past years. Attendees also need to be prepared to battle crowds. An estimated 50,000 people are expected at this year's event — 5,000 more than last year. In order to help attendees better navigate the exhibits and maximize their time, ICSC has launched a new interactive mapping tool. “Because of the size of the space this year, we're trying to make it as easy as possible for folks to navigate,” Duker says.

Visitors can log on to the ICSC Web site at and use a variety of interactive tools to preview both the Trade Expo and Leasing Mall. Visitors can also view the exhibitor list and search for exhibitors by category, keyword or booth number. They also can view an interactive map of the exposition floor. Another option is to create a personalized “Expo Planner” that will allow users to store and print a customized trade show floor plan.

The tool allows users to create an Expo Plan and make changes, such as adding exhibit booth stops into their plan. “The show is going to be even more massive this year with the larger Leasing Mall, so by factoring in exhibit locations when scheduling appointments, attendees can save a ton of time and a ton of walking,” Duker says. As usual, the Trade Expo will offer a glimpse of some of the hottest trends in products and services related to the retail industry ranging from software to signage.

Software savings

Retail property owners and managers who would like to lessen the workload of CAM auditing will want to check out AvidXchange. The Charlotte, N.C.-based firm is an industry leader in providing paperless invoice management and electronic purchase order tools for real estate companies in the office, retail, multifamily and industrial sectors. AvidXchange will be showcasing its new automated CAM reporting process that debuted in March.

Traditionally, if a tenant or owner requested back-up documentation of CAM expenses, it was often a very tedious, manual process for mall management to find and photocopy the original paperwork. AvidXchange has a new feature that entirely automates that process by electronically creating a report for a particular property location or locations related specifically to CAM charges. “Within seconds, the system generates a PDF document with all the supporting invoices and images that support each charge,” says Mike Praeger, CEO and cofounder of AvidXchange.

Another new feature AvidXchange launched in March is its Fraud Monitoring Service. The service is designed to detect potential duplicate vendor invoices and suspicious activity before paying vendors. The fraud detection feature runs as an application extension within AvidInvoice. The monitoring service issues a daily dashboard report that highlights any potential duplicate vendor invoices and suspicious activities from the previous day.

Efficient exterior lighting

Energy efficiency is the dominant trend impacting form and function in exterior lighting products. “We are trying to listen to the industry in terms of green building and LEED certification that seem to be the industry buzz right now in terms of energy-efficient fixtures,” says Randy Long, vice president of marketing and sales at WLS Lighting in Fort Worth, Texas.

WLS is receiving more requests for lighting plans that can be used in LEED certification, a green building designation issued by the U.S. Green Building Council. Yet in conjunction with that focus on energy efficiency, the proliferation of lifestyle and other open-air shopping centers is creating more demand for functional, high-wattage exterior fixtures that also offer a decorative design.

WLS is promoting its new high-performance bollard fixture, a ground lighting system that allows the client to light sidewalks and walkways with fewer lights. The bollard's unique reflective lamp system throws the light more effectively. For example, where previous systems may have required 10 bollards, the new performance series use six to seven bollards to provide the same amount of illumination, Long says.

Another energy-efficient design is WLS's new 386 model, a decorative exterior fixture that is capable of utilizing higher wattages.

“We recognize that some of the new landscape designs want to incorporate decorative fixtures in the parking lot,” Long says.

The 386 is a decorative exterior light fixture that can sustain higher wattages — 750 watts — and yet still offers a decorative look.

LED lights up

One of the trends that continues to impact the signage industry is the ongoing evolution of LED (light-emitting diode) lighting. “Although LED has been out for several years, it as been perfected more in the last few years, and it is becoming more widely used,” says Craig White, president of Priority Sign Inc. in Sheboygan, Wis.

White LED has made giant strides in recent years. White LED has typically run hotter than other colors, which gave it a very short life cycle. However, advances have improved the power supplies to the white LED, which allows for a longer life. Many white LEDs now come with a five-year warranty. Those improvements are important, because white LED lends itself to many different color variations. For example, while colors such as orange or green are standard, improvements to the white LED allow for a number of different shades of those colors.

Despite the advances in LED lighting, the majority of signs continue to use neon. The shift to LED is occurring, albeit at a modest pace, White notes. LED is a more costly product. However, the higher up-front costs are paid back over time due to lower electricity use, longer life cycle and less maintenance. LED uses significantly less power. For example red LED uses up to 80 percent electrical power compared to red neon.

New RMU designs

One of the new retail merchandising unit (RMU) designs EG Retail will be showcasing at the ICSC convention is the Frame. The unique design combines new materials with tiered merchandising display areas. “This represents a new evolution of what you can do with an RMU. It doesn't have to be a rectangle anymore,” says Terri Boettingheimer, a senior vice president at Grapevine, Texas-based EG Retail.

The Frame uses unique materials such as new metal laminates, a suspended lighting system and shelving that reveals bamboo slices between acrylic. The Frame also showcases a number of different ways to merchandise with accessories such as signage and acrylic cup holders that can be decorative additions. “We're trying to help the tenant visually merchandise their unit — to set it up like a boutique store,” Boettingheimer says.

Customers are still clamoring for more merchandising and storage space. Yet the demand for highly functional units is coupled with the desire to create fresh new designs. “We're hearing very consistently that our customers want us to reach, and design something that is unique and new,” Boettingheimer says. “I welcome that kind of challenge. The industry is so ready for a brand-new design.”

Another focus for EG Retail at this year's Trade Expo is to continue to spread the word about its new name. In February, the firm's parent company, Exhibitgroup/Giltspur, rebranded the T L Horton Design division as EG Retail in the United States and SDD Retail overseas.

Changing the mall image

Among the many design trends on display at the convention's Design Trends Hall will be mall renovations that create a new “hybrid” property that blends indoor and outdoor retail opportunities. “These creative expansions are incorporating outdoor elements that are extending the retail experiences from an enclosed environment to an outdoor environment,” says James Heller, president of ka architecture in Cleveland.

Brookfield Square is a 1.1-million-square-foot mall in Brookfield, Wis. that is taking advantage of a significant renovation to create a more inviting exterior with steps such as adding new exterior exposures to some shops and restaurants. The renovation will also create some exterior main streets with seating and lighting that makes the outside of the mall more inviting.

Traditionally, all the improvement dollars were spent on making the interior concourse more inviting to shoppers. “Today, developers are spending dollars on creating an exciting exterior exposure to these once drab malls,” Heller says. Another trend among these mall hybrids is to add restaurants and retail nodes within the parking fields, which helps to break down the size and scale of the massive parking areas. The smaller retail hubs lead to opportunities to create a town center atmosphere along with the enclosed mall, Heller notes.

Maximizing market potential

Mapping software has become part of the status quo when it comes to real estate site selection. But industry leaders such as Woburn, Mass-based geoVue are hoping to push industry expectations higher when it comes to location intelligence. “It's not about the maps, it's about the analysis behind the maps,” says Rudy Nadilo, CEO at geoVue.

A key focus at geoVue is making sure that a retail chain is optimizing its market potential — not putting too many or too few stores in a territory. “Before you map a site, you need to determine if that location is the right place to be,” Nadilo says. At geoVue the focus is on analyzing territories before they get put on the map.

The firm's iPLAN is a market optimization/market planning software that is able to determine how many stores a territory can accommodate. In some cases, chains may fall short of market capacity, while in other situations a chain may actually have too many stores for an area, resulting in low sales at individual stores.

For example, geoVue recently worked with a large regional restaurant chain to analyze its presence in the Atlanta area. The chain's existing 20 stores were generating total revenue of $44 million per year or an average per restaurant revenue of $2.2 million. The chain thought it had saturated the Atlanta market. But what geoVue found was that the market could hold 25 stores. So geoVue recommended adding five stores and relocating some of the older restaurants to better locations. The sales forecast on those changes were expected to boost same-store sales to $3.2 million and total revenues for the chain to $73.8 million — an increase of 17 percent. “We're showing retailers how to increase their presence in a market by nearly 20 percent. That's huge,” Nadilo says.

Location intelligence

In addition to showcasing its location intelligence tools and capabilities, MapInfo hopes to talk to attendees to gain some important insight on global expansion markets. “Our focus right now is really on expanding internationally,” says John Hobson, global director of predictive analytics at Troy, N.Y.-based MapInfo. In addition to the U.S. and Canada, MapInfo is providing its location analysis data and systems in the U.K., Australia and Spain.

One level of that international expansion effort involves talking to domestic firms — those companies based in the United States and Canada — to determine the global markets where MapInfo's location intelligence is needed. The demand for international market data is growing rapidly. MapInfo says it has received a significant number of requests from domestic firms for site, market and customer analysis capabilities in Europe and Asia.

A second component is providing that location intelligence data and technology to international firms that are expanding both in their own and other foreign countries. Currently, about 50 percent of MapInfo's business is split between domestic and international business, and going forward the company anticipates international business will represent a large percentage of the firm's growth, Hobson notes.

That international expansion focuses on MapInfo's AnySite desktop and online applications, as well as customized projects. AnySite analyzes the relationships between store performance and market trade area demographic characteristics. Essentially, customers such as developers, financial institutions, restaurant and retail chains can retrieve and map information from their proprietary databases and application-supplied databases to better analyze trade-area data when planning new locations or growth strategies.

New furniture fashion

Trade Expo newcomer SiteScapes Inc. will be introducing its products to convention attendees for the first time. The retail industry's continued focus on outdoor shopping centers is in part what drew SiteScapes to the retail industry, notes Ernie Johnson, president of SiteScapes in Lincoln, Neb. “Our product is very durable with a powder coat finish that is desirable for high traffic areas, which is a natural fit for the retail industry,” Johnson says.

Typically, SiteScapes provides its sturdy indoor and outdoor furnishings to government and other public institutions such as colleges and universities. SiteScapes produces powder-coated furnishings such as benches, café tables and chairs, trash receptacles, ash urns and planters. SiteScapes will be promoting its Avondale product line at the Trade Expo, which features a line of benches with a steel frame and wood slats. The firm also has a new wood and recycled plastic product line that it expects to release at the end of 2007.

Attendees also will be able to check out the latest site furnishing designs from DuMor, Inc. “The trend among landscape architects and architects is to focus on contemporary site furnishings,” says Stephen Shapard, sales manager at DuMor in Mifflintown, Pa. The firm will be showing off its new 169 series bench, as well as some new designs in its trash receptacles, ash urns and planters. The 169 bench uses an oval rather than round perforated seating material for a more contemporary design.

State-of-the-art awnings

Two products that Cooley Group will be promoting at this year's Trade Expo is its Weathertyte awning fabric, as well as its DreamScape digitally printable wall covering. The Weathertyte offers all the benefits of a vinyl in that it is completely wate-proof and weather-proof, and yet it looks and feels like a fabric, says Diane Rose, a spokesperson for the Cooley Group in Pawtucket, R.I. The Cooley Group uses the latest in chemical engineering technology to produce state-of-the-art polymer materials for use in a variety of applications such as awnings, banners and wall coverings.

Weathertyte was first introduced about a year ago, and has since been adopted for outdoor use by chains such as Saks, Macy's and Starbucks. Ruby Tuesday has even used Weathertyte panels to create a unique design feature above the bars inside its restaurants. “The material is also flame resistant, so it can be used virtually anywhere,” Rose says. The material also is available in six new colors — beige, coral, platinum, slate blue, terracotta and mauve.

DreamScape is an ink-jet printable vinyl substrate that is available in 12 standard textured surfaces, as well as a number of custom surfaces. DreamScape can be used in wall coverings, borders, murals, indoor sign displays and indoor banners. “The trend is in decoration opportunities and options that you can do with a more protective product, one that won't fade or sag, that still offers the flexibility and feel of a fabric,” Rose says.

These are just a few of the innovative products and services that will be on display at the ICSC Trade Exposition.



Image Packaging - 1034

Pack America Corp. - 273 - 1052


Aerials Express, LLC - 372

DigitalGlobe - 562

Muir Consulting, Inc. - 1069


Center Stage Productions - 751

BH Skating Parks - 333

International Play Co. - 928

Klondike Kidstuff Inc. - 571

Namco Cybertainment Inc. - 272

Nickels and Dimes Inc. - 104

Playtime LLC - 546

Snowmasters - 975

Wattman Trains & Trams - 731


Bullock Smith & Partners, Inc. - 520

C.H.M.I. - 858

Coronado Stone Products - 666

Crown Coat - 1056

The Dietz Partnership, LLC - 270

DDG Graphics - 441

FabriTec Structures - 1047

Focus 360 - 167

Nichiha - 835

O'Brien & Associates - 159

Pacificom Multimedia - 867

Pavlik Design Team - 1051

P & P Artec Inc. - 927

Scale Reproductions LLC - 853

VisionScape Imagery - 931



BOMA International - 905

CREW Network - 600

IAAPA - 955

ICSC - 404

Institute of Real Estate Management (IREM) - 700

NAIOP - 1000

North American Power Sweeping Association - 756


Avian Flyaway, Inc. - 409

Bird B Gone - 608

BirdBarrier America, Inc.- 365


Cooley Group - 719


AAA Flag & Banner Mfg. Co. -256

Britten Inc. - 941

Electric Time Co. Inc. - 304

Formetco - 708

Flagraphics, Inc. - 233

Kalamazoo Banner Works, Inc. - 861

Main Street Banner USA - 534

Sierra Display, Inc. - 146

Verdin Company, The - 135


Advanced Drainage Systems, Inc. - 355

Armorcast Products Co.- 766

Boulder Creek Stone + Brick - 335

Blacklidge Emulsions, Inc. - 864

CertaPro Painters - 510

CULTEC, Inc.- 829

Firestone Metal Products - 609

Ghaster Paintings & Coatings, Inc. - 827

GSE Lining Technology Inc. - 452

Mapes Industries - 757

Neogard - 350

Parkland Plastics - 925

Sto Corp. - 109

StormTech LLC - 357

Superior Concrete Products - 108

Vanguard ADA Systems - 338

VP Buildings, Inc. - 518


Creations At Dallas - 651

Custom Mobile Food Equipment - 723

EG Retail (Formerly, T L Horton) - 613


Applied Media Technologies Corp. - 860

Ear Phone Connection - 1053

ICNS, Inc. - 1043


ACF Environmental - 1060

American Modulear Technologies - 777

Arizona Commercial Property Services - 729

Burnham Nationwide Inc. - 1028

CCDI, Inc. - 603

Excel Bridge Manufacturing - 577

Flynn Construction Management - 1036

Horizon Retail Construction - 351

Jayeff Construction - 713

Lakeview Construction Inc. - 235

Mallforms (Top Deck Systems Inc.) - 118

Oakview Construction, Inc. - 465

Plan Express - 456

Reprographic Services Association - 935

Textura - 965

Tri-Sate Commercial Builders, Inc. - 836

Triton Construction - 1050

U.S. Bridge - 328

Yates Construction - 447


Asterop, Inc. - 236

Buxton - 619

Claritas Inc. - 213

ESRI - 429

geoVue - 1071

Google - 132

Hanley Wood Market Intelligence - 464

MapInfo - 147

MPSI Systems Inc. - 318

Pacific GeoPRO Ltd. - 865

Prediction Analytics, An Experian Co. - 257

Quantitative Analysis - 967

Retail Lease Trac, Inc. - 825

SCAN/US, Inc. - 525

Site Analytics Co. - 663

Sites USA - 269

SRC, LLC - 669

Synergos Technologies - 676

Tactician Corp. - 812

Tetrad Computer Applications - 850

Trade Dimensions International, Inc. - 313


Service Masters - 1041


Blair Sign Co./Blair Fixtures and Millwork - 413

Network Communications, Inc. - 1063


KONE Inc. - 1019

Schindler Elevator Corporation - 467

Vertical Transporation Excellence - 1065


Blueridge Analytics - 970

Bock + Clark - 705

Chas. H. Sells, Inc. - 361

Clough Harbour & Associates - 607

Domani Sustainability Consulting, LLP - 553

Dunaway Associates - 554

EFI Global - 241

Enercon Services Inc. - 170

KEMRON Environmental Services Inc. - 454

Kleinfelder - 114

Langan Engineering & Environmental Services - 339

Lerch Bates, Inc.- 863

John Meyer Consulting - 137

Old Republic Title - 460

Project Navigator, Ltd. - 206

Quad Knopf - 1030

Roux Associates, Inc. - 552

Schoor Depalma - 709

Tensar International Corp. - 504

Terracon Consultants, Inc. - 336

TerraSure - 840

U.S. Surveyor, Inc. - 937


Crown Advisors, Inc. - 126

Roberta Rea + Co. Inc. - 161


Aries Capital Inc. - 211

ContinentalEnvironment Redevelopment Fund - 1054

Nexstar - 105

Point Center Financial, Inc. - 511


ArCon - 727

Bedrosians - 701

Bone Dry - 450

Bostik - 1022

Boulder Creek Stone & Brick - 335

SpaceLinks International - 319


AquaFountains International - 334

Cantera Especial - 958

Rock & Waterscape International, Inc. - 973

Waterworks International - 212


US Franchise Systems Inc. - 322


Architectural Brass Co. - 367

Benchmark Design Group - 113

C.R. Laurence Co., Inc. - 540

DuMor Inc. - 140

FurnitureLab, The - 150

Hauser Industries Inc. - 513

International Art Properties - 225

Keystone Ridge Designs - 871

Leisure Craft Inc. - 308

Petersen Manufacturing Co. - 449

Pooch Post LLC - 924

Ramier Furniture -1062

SiteScapes, Inc. - 947

Streetscapes, Inc.- 363

United Receptacle - 324

Victor Stanley, Inc. - 558

Wabash Valley Mfg. Inc. - 158

Wesnic Inc. - 418


NBO Systems Inc. - 667

StoreFinancial - 604


ista North America - 237

Roth Bros., Inc. - 424


Adjusters International - 466

Anderson Kill Loss Advisors - 171

Arthur J. Gallagher Risk Management Services, Inc.- 204

Hilb Rogal Hobbs - 601

JCH Insurance Brokers - 810

LandAmerica Commercial Services - 240

Scheers, Inc. - 1059

Wachovia Insurance Services, Inc. - 1032


Brickman Group Ltd, The - 776

Preserved Treescapes Intl. - 247

T.H.I.S. Corp. - 1026

Superior Building Products - 508

Visuart - 326

Waterless Grass - 1037


Architectual Area Lighting - 851

Dynamic Lighting - 330

Eclipse Lighting, Inc. - 1039

Hubbell Lighting, Inc. - 847

Lighting Systems - 221

Quality Lighting - 110

Sternberg Lighting - 567

Stresscrete/King Luminaire - 963

Visionaire Lighting - 923

WLS Lighting Systems, Inc. - 537


Advanced Pavement Technologies - 808

Baker Commodities - 952

Defender Services, Inc. - 954

Facilitec Corporation - 1066

Flint Trading, Inc. - 702

Genesis Facility Management, Inc. - 930

Grindall Concrete - 803

Ideal Shield L.L.C - 1061

Laro Service Systems, Inc. - 1018

Sanitors Retail Services - 107

Schwarze Industries, Inc. - 458

Service Management Systems, Inc. - 961

SSC Services Solutions - 476

Superior Handling Equipment, LLC - 133

Thinkage Ltd. - 453

TYMCO International, Ltd. - 127

Victory Sweepers - 833


Medi-Rub Corporation - 936


Focus 360 - 167

Virtual 3D Inc. - 737


Integrated Paving Concepts Inc. - 964

IPS Services, Inc. - 166

Sealmaster - 331

Zimmer Consultants Ltd. - 862


California Real Estate Journal - 209

Centers & Malls, LLC - 505

Chain Store Age - 237

Commercial Property News - 509

Directory of Major Malls / Shopping Center Digest - 124

McGraw-Hill Construction - 876

Real Estate Media Inc. - 205

Retail Traffic/National Real Estate Investor - 519

Retail Construction Magazine - 555

Shopping Center Business - 741

Wall Street Journal, The - 1038


CoStar Group, The - 809, 909

Eastern Union Funding - 610

Eximius BPO - 957

Hopkins and Associates - 956

LoopNet, Inc. - 762

N3 Capital - 755

Realpoint - 506

Spectrus Real Estate - 826

Trepp LLC - 707

WebArchives - 804


Riley, Garrison & Associates - 806


Building Technology Associates, Inc. - 1055

Carlisle SynTec Inc. - 123

Centimark Roof System - 854

CertainTeed Corporation - 536

Dinyari, Inc. - 839

Duro-last Roofing Inc. - 819

Firestone Building Products - 222

GAF Materials Corp. - 771

GenFlex Roofing Systems - 325

Highland Commercial Roofing - 951

Jaco Construction, Inc. - 922

Metal-Era, Inc. - 1057

Mid-Western Commercial Roofers Inc. - 823

Nations Roof - 1020

North American Roofing Services - 426

Petersen Aluminum Corp. - 435 - 933

Roof USA - 857

SingleSource Roofing Corporation - 405

Stevens Roofing Systems - 141

Watson Companies - 929


Creatix Studios Int'l Ltd. - 877

Dekra-Lite Industries, Inc. - 628

Exterior Products Inc. - 354

Goods To Go! Graphics - 971

Harrington Decorating Co. Inc. - 128

James Trogolo Co. The - 866

JIT Christmas - 229

Tree Classics - 1031


Cartronics - 1067

IPC International Corp. - 652

IPVision - 763

Valor Security Services - 959

Vortex Doors - 327


Ad Art Sign Co.- 1058

Barlo Signs - 822

Blair Sign Co./Blair Fixtures and Millwork - 413

Carmanah Sign - 805

Colite International - 856

Cooley Group - 719

Don Bell Signs - 226

DynaScan Technology, Inc. - 919

DSA Phototech, Inc.- 852

Image Works, Inc. - 1024

Jones Sign Nationwide - 173

North American Signs - 932

Priority Sign, Inc. - 660

Visible Graphics, Inc - 767


CPI International, Inc. - 352


Accruent - 208

Asset Management Technologies Inc. - 119

AvidXchange - 436

AVM Technologies, Inc. - 523

Catylist Inc. - 455

Facility Wizard Software - 960

ICA, Inc. - 154

ID Plans Corp - 459

Integrated Business Systems, Inc. - 136

Intuit Real Estate Solutions - 428

Maxwell Systems, Inc. - 230

PlanData Systems Corp. - 157

PlanEASe Software - 761

REI Wise - 1068

Sage Software - 373

SKYLINE Software - 638

Virtual Premise, Inc. - 411

Yardi Systems - 347


Kiddie Kab Strollers - 340

Smarte Carte Inc. - 512


EASI File Corp. - 323


Asset Preservation Inc. - 759

KBKG, Inc. - 859

MS Consultants, Inc. - 329

Tax Compliance Corp. - 812


Fehrs & Peers - 969

MPSI Systems Inc. - 318

Quixote Transportation Technologies - 353

ShopperTrak - 258

St. Michael Strategies - 704


PDQ Manufacturing, Inc. - 747

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