Turning Malls Around


Traditional malls in the U.S. are in decline, but one developer, José de Jesús Legaspi, has found a recipe for success by revitalizing failing properties by converting them into Hispanic cultural centers–leading to a 30% increase in income and foot traffic. In 2013, the company filled nearly 240,000 square feet of empty retail in an Atlanta mall. Hispanic households buy 20% more shoes and clothing than non-Hispanic ones, so the mall’s store mix is geared accordingly. Because Hispanic families often shop as a unit, Legaspi says, “The malls have to have something for five generations of family.” When you focus on cultural drivers, we believe you can apply this same lesson to many “failing” industries. It’s not about getting bigger, it’s about getting better.