Isetan likely to cease own retail operations at Wisma Atria

Isetan likely to cease own retail operations at Wisma Atria
Starhill Gobal Reit, managed by YTL Starhill Global, owns parts of Wisma Atria and Ngee Ann City shopping malls.

ISETAN (Singapore) will likely stop conducting its own retailing operations at its Wisma Atria department store from the second quarter of next year.

However, in a statement to the Singapore Exchange yesterday, the firm said that in line with its core business, it intends to continue retailing activities and food and beverage services at the premises by housing tenants and providing the necessary facilities management.

"While the company endeavours to lease out all floors of the premises, there is no assurance that it would be able to achieve full tenancy, due to market conditions or commercial reasons," it added.

Under such circumstances, the company said, it might continue to operate retailing activities in that part of the premises until tenants are found.

In the meantime, the company will continue to operate its own department store operations in the Orchard Road shopping belt at its Isetan Scotts store in Shaw House.

It also has four suburban department stores, in Katong, Tampines, Serangoon Central and Jurong East.

Isetan said it is committed to its long-term purpose of running department stores and supermarkets.

Last month, Isetan announced that it had slipped into the red with a third-quarter loss of $2.9 million, owing to a slow growth in sales following renovation works at its Scotts department store.

Other than its new store in Jurong East, the other outlets also registered lower sales in the third quarter, owing to a competitive and challenging retail environment, it said.

In October, Isetan said it was planning to lease out one floor of its Wisma Atria department store to Japanese restaurants and food kiosks, "to spread Japanese food culture".

This article was first published on December 27, 2014.
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