Retailers in AFI Palace Cotroceni Mega Fun registered sales worth EUR 164 million in 2010, said AFI representatives. In December alone sales amounted to EUR 22 million, 15 percent more against the same month of 2009.
“For us, 2010 was a successful year from which we had a lot to learn, considering that usually the first year is considered to be the hardest for any mall,” said Israel Visel, mall manager Mega Fun. Last year AFI Palace Cotroceni Mega Fun had on average 50,000 visitors on weekdays and about 70,000 visitors on weekends. Out of its 280 tenants about 34 retailers were replaced in 2010, the mall presently having an occupancy rate of about 96 percent, said Visel.
For this year, the company will concentrate on developing the “mega fun concept” while working on improving its business mix by bringing the latest brands on the local market, such as Swedish fashion retailer H&M which will open its first unit in AFI Palace Cotroceni this March, added Visel.
He also expressed his confidence that 2011 will bring better results as there are clear signs that the market is recovering, albeit slowly. The opening of the Basarab Bridge alone, which will connect the mall with Victoriei Square, is expected to generate a higher traffic in the area, he explained.
Real estate investment and development company AFI Europe, owner of AFI Palace Cotroceni announced that by the end of 2012 it should finalize four new commercial projects, following a total investment of approximately EUR 155 million. Visel said that contracts are already being negotiated for anchor hypermarkets as well as with other tenants. The new projects are:
- AFI Business Park Cotroceni, an office building located near the mall to which it will be also connected. Works on the project have started last November. About EUR 35 million will be the investment required for building the first tower which should be delivered in July 2012.
- AFI Palace B.Noi, which will be a mall located in the Bucurestii Noi neighborhood in Bucharest. With a total area of about 22,400 sqm it will include a commercial area, a hypermarket, and an office building. The mall will also be connected to a DIY store. The investment in the project will amount to approximately EUR 60 million, according to AFI representatives, and will be finalized in the last quarter of 2012.
- AFI Palace Arad will be located in the center of Arad and it will be connected Atrium Mall Arad. “We decided together with the management of Atrium that instead of competing we should collaborate,” said Visel, explaining that two malls would unsustainable in a city the size of Arad. The project will require an investment of approximately EUR 35 million and should be finalized in the last quarter of 2012.
- AFI Palace Ploiesti should also be delivered in the last quarter of 2012, following an investment of approximately EUR 35 million. It will located about 850 meters from the Ploiesti city hall and it will include a hypermarket a DIY store and a commercial area. The mall will have a total area of 29,000 sqm. It will also include a 10,000 sqm ofiice building.