Dollarama, Winners among retailers driving up occupancy rates: RioCan CEO – National


RioCan Real Estate Investment Trust says supermarkets, pharmacies and discount retailers are driving growth in its occupancy rates.

Jonathan Gitlin says retailers including Dollarama Inc. and TJX Companies Inc., which owns Winners, HomeSense and Marshalls, are taking up even more space in the Toronto-based realty company’s portfolio.

The chief executive says other businesses fuelling growth include service providers such as nail and hair salons and medical offices and clinics.

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Gitlin’s remarks came after RioCan said Thursday that occupancy across its commercial portfolio increased to 97.3 per cent in its most recent quarter, up from 96.4 per cent at the same time last year.

Retail occupancy for the real estate trust’s third quarter increased by 20 basis points from the prior quarter to reach 97.8 per cent.

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Chief operating officer John Ballantyne says the company’s occupancy rate is so high because many retailers are looking to add to their store counts with properties measuring between 1,858 to 2,322 square meters.

He says retailers also seek smaller units between 139 and 185 square meters.

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