Secondhand Clothing Sales To Make Up 10% Of Global Fashion Sales 

Secondhand clothing sales are currently on track to make up a tenth of all global fashion market sales, according to a report from GlobalData which was done for the resale company ThredUp. The cost of living crisis and general concerns over sustainability are two of the reasons cited for consumers being more drawn to secondhand clothing.

According to the data, reported by the Guardian, “Global sales of pre-owned clothes surged by 18% last year to $197bn (£156bn) and are forecast to reach $350bn in 2028.” 

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The secondhand market in the US grew seven times faster than general fashion retail where sales have been relatively stagnant throughout the past year, according to the data. 

Co-founder and chief executive of ThredUp, James Reinhart, stated that the resale sector of the fashion industry likely was able to grow in an otherwise tough market because it’s “more resilient” in a housing market that’s struggling along with high energy costs and food pricing. 

“When consumer sentiment is softer, value is key. People are looking to shop secondhand to drive more value.”

Reinhart went on to explain that interest in secondhand items has been mainly prominent in younger generations, however, it’s now starting to “span generations.”

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The GlobalData report showed that more than half of the shoppers analyzed had bought something second hand within the past year; 65% of those shoppers were aged between 12 and 43 (generation Z and millennials), and 38% of the consumers stated that they shop secondhand to get better deals on higher end brands. 

Digital secondhand shopping has also made it easier for consumers to shop sustainably, especially among the younger generations. ThredUp, Depop, and other online secondhand retailers have been so successful that the sector is projected to see its sales more than double within the next five years to an estimated $40 billion. 

For the older generation, shoppers within that demographic are more likely to go to physical retail stores, as there is also now an increase in availability to secondhand clothing stores. 

Reinhart also stated that it would be beneficial to the industry if there was legislation implemented to further limit the growth of fast fashion, an industry that is responsible for a lot of the CO2 and greenhouse gas emissions that come from the fashion industry in general. 

“It is hard not to believe that there will be some activity in that space in the next three to five years given how much of the apparel ends up in landfill,” he said.


Bed Bath & Beyond Files For Bankruptcy, Closing Hundreds Of Stores 

Bed Bath & Beyond announced Sunday that it filed for bankruptcy, stating that they will be closing its remaining 360 Bed Bath & Beyond stores and 120 buybuy Baby locations. Within the past year the company has closed around 400 stores.  

Chain department stores such as TJ Maxx and HomeGoods have begun deals to take over the retail spaces, as well as gyms. The vast spaces of Bed Bath & Beyond stores offer a unique opportunity for commercial real estate. 

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“E-commerce scared a lot of people off from building retail,” said Brandon Isner, the head of retail research at CBRE, a commercial real estate firm, to CNN

“A lot of great real estate is going to come available into a market where there’s been no vacancies. It will not take long for retailers to occupy those spaces.”

“For us, the biggest source of new store locations comes from other retailers closing stores. So many of our most productive locations were formerly Circuit City or Toys ‘R’ Us or Sports Authority,” Burlington CEO Michael O’Sullivan said.

New commercial real estate construction has decreased vastly within the last couple of years, and retail store spaces have also been scarce, so the availability of these large building spaces could be a new opportunity for major retailers. 

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Bed Bath & Beyond has stores in all 50 states, a majority of them are in the most populated areas of the country. A majority of the stores are also located in large cities and mid-size suburbs. These are all good qualities for retailers looking to expand their spaces in a prime location. 

“There is good interest for Bed Bath & Beyond stores that are closing given desirable locations and an average size of around 30,000 square feet,” retail analysts from Telsey Advisory Group said.

“In some cases, landlords are also eager to replace old Bed Bath & Beyond leases because the company was paying below-market rent in certain locations,” Telsey Advisory Group analysts said.

“Bed Bath and Beyond sites are interesting to us, and we are exploring available opportunities with our franchisees,” a spokesperson told CNN.

Instagram Now Allowing All Users To Tag Products As Ads In Posts

Instagram is now allowing all users to tag products in the posts they upload to their feeds, enabling any photo to act as an advertisement for whatever product is tagged.

Instagram initially announced their plans to give everyone the ability to tag products in their photos last month. The feature is now currently available for all users. Originally this feature was only available for content creators who make their income by selling products through their Instagram posts.

Users can now tag products in their images as long as the business is registered and set up with Instagram Shopping. The company made a statement regarding the update to the app and their hopes for the future.

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“From supporting brands you love to helping your friends and family discover new products they may like, sharing products on Instagram just got easier.”

Full instructions on how users can tag a brand and specific product are posted on the company’s blog, but it essentially works the same way as when you would tag a person in your picture.

Like when another individual is tagged in a post, users will be able to see when an image has product tags, and can easily click the image to have the link appear. Users can then purchase the tagged product directly in the app or through the brand’s product page.

With this new feature any Instagram post can be an advertisement, something that is likely very exciting for brands, however, it’s not clear what the benefits are to the average user, who’s essentially providing free advertising through their posts. Instagram, however, believes that this is a feature many users will utilize.

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Business owners will receive a notification whenever someone tags a product of theirs in a photo and they can manage and view all tagged content on their profile. Businesses can also manage who can tag their products in their preference settings.

Instagram claims that this is just the beginning for product tagging for the average user, and they’re currently working on more ways to bring this feature to other aspects of the app as well. For the past couple of years Instagram has pivoted to become more of a platform for shopping, and the company has been transparent about the ways in which they’re trying to monetize every aspect of the app.

The company even said they no longer want to be viewed as just a photo-sharing app, unless it’s referring to their goals of expanding shopping and video features on the app.

In December, Instagram’s head Adam Mosseri said that it” is prioritizing Reels as well as shopping in 2022,” so time will tell what other features will be implemented to further support the app’s goals.

Amazon Opens Up First Cashierless Whole Foods 

Amazon has officially brought its cashierless Just Walk Out technology to a Whole Foods store for the first time. Customers can now shop and leave the store with all their items without having to interact with any cashier. 

The revamped Whole Foods opened up on February 23rd in Washington, DC’s Glover Park location, where there’s been a Whole Foods for over 20 years. 

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While Amazon has introduced this technology in Amazon Go and Amazon Fresh branded stores, this is the first time the cashierless technology is being fully implemented into a Whole Foods store. 

Amazon bought the Whole Foods grocery chain back in 2017 for $13.7 billion, but up until this point Amazon’s integration with the chain has been more minimal; offering discounts and free delivery services to Prime account holders. 

The Whole Foods is a 21,500 square foot location, however, the Amazon Fresh store in Washington is the largest Amazon location to implement Just Walk Out cashierless technology. Amazon’s implementation of this technology in a preexisting Whole Foods location with no additional Amazon branding being added to the overall design and aesthetic is proving to experts that the tech company is very confident in the cashierless technology.

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There’s no official word yet if Amazon plans to bring the technology to all Whole Foods stores, but it’s likely more Just Walk Out stores will begin to appear throughout the nation. 

According to a reporter who went to the DC Whole Foods location, the store features Amazon’s palm-recognition technology for entry, alongside with QR codes. The store still has employees staffing various counters who are also there to assist customers who may not fully understand the cashierless technology at first. 

The store is overall leaning into a more self-service model. Customers are able to cut their own loafs of bread and other features that promote independence. 

The cashierless technology is being met with mixed reactions, especially from DC residents who were used to shopping regularly at that specific Whole Foods location. 

The second Whole Foods store that’s set to open with cashierless Just Walk Out technology is located in Los Angeles. The brand announced that it will likely be opening later this year.

Etsy Buys Clothing App Depop In $1 Billion Deal 

Popular online retail giant Etsy announced this week that they would be purchasing Depop, a British secondhand fashion resale app that works like eBay, but specifically for clothing; the app is mainly used by younger generations as a means of purchasing vintage clothing and custom made pieces. 

Josh Silverman, the chief executive of Etsy, which is based in Brooklyn, New York, said that he was already expecting the resale craze to peak as we enter this post-pandemic world. 

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“I expect this whole resale market to continue long after the pandemic, and I believe that Depop’s passionate community of fashion-conscious young people will be leading the way. The generation Z demographic is enormous, and is known as the trendsetter demographic.”

More than 90% of Depop’s 30 million users are under the age of 26, which makes them a part of generation Z, the smartphone conscious generation that utilizes technology to communicate, but also improve the world. 

Etsy revealed that Depop is the 10th most visited shopping site among generation Z consumers in the United States. Etsy itself was founded back in 2005 and has been attempting to expand its influence among younger generations. The average Etsy user is 39, as the app mainly focuses on crafts and handmade items as well as secondhand clothing. Etsy is known for helping small business owners create a larger customer base for themselves, as the site is so universally used around the world.  

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Simon Beckerman is the founder of Depop, and claims he originally made the app for fun back in 2011 while working at a fashion magazine. The app now has registered users in 150 countries and currently has 2 million active sellers; which sold about $650 million worth of secondhand clothing last year alone; Depop took a $70 million cut. 

“The idea for the app came from an early realization that there was going to be a new generation of people who were most acquainted with using mobile phones and there was no app designed for selling clothes.”

Beckerman, who was born in Milan, told Artefact magazine in 2015 that “the concept for the app was initially a shop for the magazine I worked for in Italy and we would sell everything featured in the magazine. When we started Depop, apps were [in their] very early stages and apart from the three or four main ones that everybody was starting to use heavily – such as Instagram, Facebook or Twitter – it wasn’t very clear how we were going to use them fully. We didn’t realise how integrated with our lives they would be.”

Etsy claimed that they would be allowing Depop to continue to operate as is; a standalone business run in London. In general, the secondhand clothing market is valued at about $40 billion, so this acquisition was likely one of the biggest business decisions Etsy could’ve done coming out of this pandemic.

Best Black Friday Tech Deals For Students Of All Ages 

Regardless of if you’re heading into middle school, high school, or college, Black Friday is the perfect time to start looking for new devices and technology that will not only help you in school, but in your personal life as well. Many brands have already begun their Black Friday deals online as a means of making up for the lack of foot traffic they’ll likely experience this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic. Here are some of the most highly anticipated and popular tech devices going on sale this week:

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Tablets: Tablets are great for kids all ages, and now that there’s a multitude of child-friendly tablet devices on the market, there’s never been more options for you this year. Amazon’s Fire HD 7 Kids Edition tablet is going on sale for $60, which is $40 off its original price, and this deal will be active until December 1st. Amazon’s Fire HD 8 Kids Edition is now $80 as well, $60 off its original price. This deal is also active until December 1st. Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S6 Lite is $279.99 at Walmart, $70 off its original price and the deal also includes 64GB of storage and an S Pen.

Laptops: For older kids entering into their college years, Black Friday is the perfect time to purchase a new personal computer for themselves. One of the most popular laptops used among college student’s is the HP Envy due to its high quality performance, and touchscreen capabilities. The laptop is going on sale for $750, which is $250 off its original price. 

Speakers: While speakers may not necessarily be as helpful in your schooling as a laptop, creating a comfortable environment where one is able to play their calming music as they study for the big exam is helpful in itself. Some of the most popular speakers on the market that are going on sale this year include the Sonos Move speaker which is available for $300 on Amazon and Best Buy, $100 off its original pricing. Amazon’s third generation Echo Dot is also now just $19, and the Echo Studio is $40 off as well for $160. 

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Smartphones: Cell phones in general are always a great product to buy on Black Friday because pretty much all kinds of smartphones go on sale. Apple’s iPhone SE is projected to be $200 at Best Buy when one trades in their iPhone 7 or newer. Samsung’s Galaxy A51 is now on sale for $275 as Best Buy as well, $125 off its original pricing. Motorola’s Moto G Stylus is 50% off at Best Buy for $150.

Headphone Deals: Headphones are a universally great gift for anyone, and this year some of the most popular wireless ones are going on sale. The Bose 700 noise-canceling headphones are currently $340 at Amazon, $40 off their original price. This deal will be active until January 4th. Some alternative colors are also on sale for as low as $299 at Best Buy. Apple’s AirPods Pro are $200 also at Best Buy, $50 off their original price. Sony’s WH-1000XM4 are $280 at Best Buy, $72off their original price.

Smart Home Devices: The Philips Hue White Color Ambiance 3-pack will transform any room into a multi-colored paradise. LED lights are extremely trendy and popular right now, so take it a step further and add some sophistication to your room by picking up these lightbulbs at Best Buy on Black Friday for $100, $35 off its original pricing!

These Retailers Are Celebrating Black Friday Early This Year

With the Covid-19 pandemic throwing a major wrench in the way we all shop, many major retailers throughout the country are deciding to start their Black Friday deals online and early to give consumers ample time to take advantage of the year’s biggest day of sales. And since it’s still early in the holiday season, getting all of your shopping done now will make for less stress later. 

Abbio: The week of October 23rd to October 30th Abbio kitchen is offering its customers 25% of the entire site as a part of the brand’s pre-Thanksgiving VIP sale. Just use the code ABBIOHOLIDAY25 at checkout to receive your deal. Additionally, if you miss this round of sales, from November 26th to November 30th Abbio will be offering 25% off the entire site again for Black Friday/Cyber Monday, simply use code ABBIOBF25 at checkout. 

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Best Buy: Best Buy has already started their holiday season with their daily Deal of the Day. This type of promotion is typical for major retailers like Best Buy during the holiday season, as it gives consumers something to look forward to in regard to waiting for something they want to go on sale. As the name suggests the item on sale changes everyday, but so far Best Buy has offered savings on amazing technology such as the Bella Pro Series 8-quart air fryer, Nixplay digital photo frame, Wakeman camping tent and Conair Hot Air Brush Styler. 

Dell: If you’re in the market for a new PC laptop or computer this holiday season look no further than Dell. Dell is known already for being one of the most affordable and well-functioning brands in terms of their personal computers. The company has already begun rolling out some Black Friday deals on their monitors and other various electronics; currently laptop models are on sale for up to 28% off!

Home Depot: If you have a handy individual in your life you’ve most likely shopped at Home Depot for gifts before, or maybe you just need to pick up some new materials for a home improvement project and you don’t want to break the bank. Either way, Home Depot is already offering a multitude of holiday sales, their biggest has yet to come, however. From November 6th to December 2nd Home Depot will be offering deals on holiday decorations, appliances, tools, and more. You can even pre-order your Christmas Tree now to make it less stressful for you come December!

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Lowe’s: Keeping up with the home improvement theme, Lowe’s is also offering a bunch of holiday deals this year. Like Best Buy, Lowes has begun offering one-day Cyber Steals to motivate customers to check their website everyday for what the daily deal might be. So far the savings have reached up to 40% on select appliances and home renovation items!

Macy’s: Macy’s is known for being one of the go-to establishments on Black Friday, and this year they’re carrying that energy into their online Black Friday deals; which will officially begin on November 16th. Macy’s will have sales in every single one of their departments as usual. 

Target: Target will begin offering their Balck Friday deals throughout the entire month of November with discounts on home goods, clothing, accessories, electronics, and even groceries. Starting on November 29th customers will be able to preview the stores weekly Black Friday Now deals that will last for the entirety of the holiday season. Also, this year Target is introducing price-adjustments from November 1st to December 24th on any item that’s advertised as a Black Friday deal but offered at a lower price online or in store. 

Walmart: This retail giant normally always starts their Black Friday deals early in the season to ease some of the pressure of the actual day. Walmart is starting their deals on November 4th and will progressively add more and more as time goes on until it’s actual Black Friday.

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Target, Costco, And Other Major Retailers Gearing Up To Reopen To The Public

Stores and businesses that have been deemed as “essential” within the past few months are beginning to take steps to return to a life of normalcy. Customers are eager to return to some of their favorite establishments, however, some worker safety/labor groups are nervous that these companies are prematurely pulling back on health and safety measures while we’re still very much battling this deadly pandemic. 

More states and cities have begun loosening their stay-at-home orders, so it makes sense that businesses like Target, Walmart, Costco and Kroger are following suit. Last week New York City, which was previously an epicenter for the virus to spread, allowed retail stores to set up curbside pickup for their customers. California permitted all schools, gyms, movie theaters, and bars to reopen with modifications, and some states have opened nail salons, massage parlors, and bowling alleys. However, it’s these states that have decided to reopen that are now seeing massive spikes in case numbers. 

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More than 117,000 American citizens have died due to the Covid-19 virus; for comparison that’s more American lives lost than in World War 1. The economy has been heavily impacted with over 40 million individuals filing for unemployment within the past three months, and recently the stock market began to drop again due to fears of a second wave. 

“The safety measures retailers are rolling back are good practices for preventing both Covid-19 and future pandemics. We should keep simple prevention measures such as these in place as long as possible as we move towards reopening the economy to ensure a new wave of infections does not force us to again shelter in place,”  said Brandon Brown, an epidemiologist at the University of California, Riverside.

Currently there are no federal requirements for how or when these “essential” stores are able to reopen, it’s more so up to the state or local governments. Costco, specifically, is beginning to bring back their free samples in a number of stores nationwide. The CFO of Costco, Richard Galanti, claims that all the samples are pre-packaged and the company will likely put up a plexiglass barrier between the server, samples, and customer. 

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A spokesperson for Target recently announced that they would be reopening the Starbucks located within the store in some locations but they’re taking “a careful market-by-market approach, and in some cases store-by-store, to ensure [they] prioritize the health and safety of our team and guests.”

“There’s a collective and growing recognition that [retailers] are likely falling well below pre-pandemic profitability levels as a percentage of sales. They need more in-store sales across categories — not just grocery and not just online or click-and-collect. They want feet through the door,” said Doug Stephens, founder of consulting firm Retail Prophet.

Obviously there’s a strong desire to get everyone back to work and to return to a life of normalcy, however, prematurely loosening these restrictions could potentially further influence how bad of a second wave America will face in the fall. Labor groups are taking to social media to express their disapproval of the decision for these establishments to reopen. While most are emphasizing their new health and safety procedures, it still doesn’t seem like enough for some. 

Regardless, it’s important that everyone continues to listen to their healthcare providers and protect themselves as much as possible when out in public.

Retail Therapy

Does Retail Therapy Actually Work?

We’ve all had dark moments in our life that require some sort of therapy to help remind us who we are. Besides actually going to therapy, which is always the best thing to do in times of mental distress, there are a ton of ways that people cope with hard times in their life. Whether it be watching your favorite romantic comedy with your best friends and eating an entire pint of ice cream, or heading down to the mall and indulging in some retail therapy, there’s a multitude of ways to help distract ourselves from the trials and tribulations of everyday life, but how effective are these methods of coping actually?

When it comes to retail therapy specifically, there’s no doubt that buying a brand new pair of shoes or a nice expensive denim jacket will definitely make anyone feel a lot more stylish and better in the moment. But how efficient is shopping for pleasure in the long run when it comes to dealing with certain stresses in our lives? 

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“Purchases made during a retail therapy session are unexpectedly beneficial, which leads to mood boosts with no regret or guilt. Retail Therapy is a strategic effort and process and retailers could learn from their personal findings as well. When done in moderation, retail therapy can be an extremely beneficial tool to help boost your mood,” said Margaret Meloy, the lead author of a recent study on retail therapy.

Obviously, the effectiveness of retail therapy is situational to your specific emotional state, however, there are some general conclusions about it that show it really is beneficial. Studies suggest that using shopping as a means of coping with uncertainties in our lives puts us back in control when we find ourselves in situations where we feel the opposite. You’re the one deciding where you want to shop, how much you want to spend, what you want to get, etc. and therefore are reminding yourself that you are in control of your own life and the path you choose to go down. 

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Evidence also suggests that shopping can be a great way of mentally preparing yourself when facing any sort of change/new phase in your own life. Before you make a purchase, there’s a certain level of thinking that goes into it. For the sake of argument let’s say we’re talking about buying a brand new pair of pink pants that are a little out of your comfort zone in terms of style. Before you buy them, internally you’re going to think about where you’d wear the pants, what draws you to them, and eventually, should you choose to purchase them, why none of that really matters and that you simply just want the pants. 

The simple type of logic that goes into buying new clothing, or anything for that matter, for ourselves can be used for the mental stresses we face in our own lives. Say you have to move cities if you want to keep your job, you’re going to think about where you’re going to be heading, what might draw you there, and eventually, should you choose to make the move, why none of that really matters and that changes in life are good and show that you’re growing as an individual; see the connection?

Additionally, research has suggested that shopping causes the average individual to get excited and releases the hormone responsible for happiness in our brains, dopamine, which is especially helpful when we are facing challenges in life and our dopamine levels are feeling the effects. The activity itself also requires us to move around and interact with others in order to find what we’re looking for, so it builds our social skills and ability to hold casual conversations, while keeping our physical bodies active. 

While retail therapy will never have the same effectiveness as actual professional therapy, the facts are there. Shopping helps remind us that we’re in control of our own lives, capable of making decisions, and can do anything we set our minds to, even if that means just buying a new pair of pink pants!

Shopping Mall

Triple Five’s “American Dream” Opens in New Jersey

With many shopping malls seeing closures and 9,000 stores closing throughout America during 2019 it came as a surprise to many when a $5 billion mall – American Dream – started construction in New Jersey’s Meadowlands.

While there are many who are huge fans of the “mall-slash-entertainment center” there are also many who are against the idea. With some saying that American Dream is the future of shopping, tourists are predicted to head to New Jersey by the bucket load. Others have commented on the environmental impact the center will have as well as the fact that the retail format it is promoting is in fact diminishing.

At the moment it is unclear which argument is the right one, however Triple Five, the owners of American Dream, are confident that over 40 million people will head to the 3 meter square foot center, spending their hard-earned cash at the many retail outlets in the mall as well as heading to the entertainment areas, including indoor slopes for snowboarding and skiing, a wave pool for surfing, an aquarium and of course, what shopping center is complete without its own roller coasters?

However the critics are fierce with the general consensus being that Meadowlands is an area that shoppers would want to avoid. Featuring in the opening credits of The Sopranos has nurtured the belief that the area is a “mafia dumping ground” while many other projects have been and failed before.

Previously known as Xanadu, the mall has had over twenty false starts, leading the locals to give the center the nickname Xanadon’t. Even Chris Christie, the former New Jersey governor, denounced the building stating it was “the ugliest damn building in New Jersey and maybe America.”

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Alongside the negative thoughts on the area, environmentalists have spent decades campaigning against the project and the building itself. Sited on wetlands that 125 different bird species call home, the wildlife has suffered significantly. Many of the residents have expressed their frustration at such a large amount of taxpayers’ money being invested into the property – over $1 billion which could be spent on more important requirements in the area including providing more affordable housing.

Jeff Tittel is the director of the Sierra Club environmental group’s New Jersey sector and commented that “they filled in wetlands to build a water park. It’s almost funny.” And with his prediction that to be a success the project will need to bring in around 100,000 cars per day, he is concerned about the traffic issues as well as the damage being caused to the environment through pollution, saying “this is a symbol of all that is wrong with New Jersey politics.”

The mall’s owners Triple Five have hit back with optimism that the American Dream will not only be generating billions for the New Jersey economy through taxes, but also create 17,000 jobs as well as potentially giving the retail industry a lifeline in its battle with online shopping.

Thanks to online retailers such as Amazon, the shopping mall – once the epicenter for teenagers to hang out while the older generations continued to shop – has seen a huge decrease in stores staying open. And with so many people preferring to shop from the comfort of their own home, on public transport or, well, wherever they want to be, an estimated 20 – 25 percent of our malls will have shut before 2022.

Chief Marketing Strategist of Triple Five, Paul Ghermezian is adamant that due to our need for real experiences, rather than purely living online, his mall will thrive:

“It’s real experiences like ride a coaster… you know, come in and touch something, sting-rays, lace up your skates and get out there.”

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With this in mind more than 55 percent of American Dream is dedicated to creating experiences with restaurants, cinemas and hotels joining the shops and activity centers.

While Triple Five is family-owned they like to take their time in ensuring everything is just right and the same applies to American Dream. While Big Snow – North America’s first indoor, real snow ski and snowboard center – opened in December none of the shops are scheduled to open until 2020.

Nickelodeon Universe has also opened and is the largest indoor theme park in North America. With their star acts promoting the rides – including Rugrats and SpongeBob SquarePants – it is believed it will become a huge success.

There will also be the DreamWorks Water Park that will include the ability to surf a 6-foot wave while others can relax in the cabanas looking at views of Manhattan.

However, just because it will have been built, does not mean people will visit. Former chairman and chief executive of Sears Canada, Mark Cohen, does not believe so. While he has had experience working with the Ghermezians and has always been impressed by what they have been achieving, he is also wary of the success they claim they will achieve. According to Cohen the center’s location is a thinly populated area so an indoor entertainment and shopping complex could be a mighty draw. However he believes that if “they come further south” life will be harder for the company.