Retail Merchandiser - July/August 2013 - (Page 76)

Real Estate R.H. LEDBETTER PROPERTIES Rescuing Retailers R.H. Ledbetter Properties works closely with a diverse list of retailers in Georgia, Tennessee and Indiana to develop and redevelop spaces that will help each party be successful. Seeing itself as a long-term investor, Ledbetter Properties helps its clients build and retain business. incomes, Ledbetter Properties has had to become even more creative in helping retailers maintain business. Fortunately, it has the resources to pull it off as a turnkey developer. “Our typical strategy is to build and retain,” Ledbetter says. “We manage our properties and keep them leased up and well-maintained. We are a longterm investor. We’re not building and then selling to a faceless, nameless institution or fund. We are here. We are accessible. And we are successful when our retailers are successful.” Adapting to the Market I E. Wright Ledbetter, COO Rome, Ga. 76 t may not be in the retail trenches helping customers find the right dress for an event, recommending good reads for a summer vacation or guiding them to aisle three for cereal, but R.H. Ledbetter Properties still plays a big part in retailers’ successes. As a developer, owner and operator of 1.8 million square feet of commercial properties across Georgia, Tennessee and Indiana, Ledbetter Properties knows that the behind-the-scenes decision it makes affects retail performance at the register. “Our customers are the retailers, not the consumers, and our objective is to make our retailers happy,” explains COO E. Wright Ledbetter of the family owned company. “We view them as our business partners, so we work closely with retailers to make sure we are providing them with the best business environment for their needs so they can find success conducting their business.” In the past few years, while retailers have suffered from poor sales because of diminishing disposable July/August 2013 So if that means refurbishing and renovating existing properties or looking at new markets, Ledbetter Properties is ready to adapt and tackle the property challenges retailers are having today. The result could be breaking down boxes and right-sizing them for multiple retailers, such as taking a 25,000square-foot space for an electronics store down to 15,000 square feet. Or perhaps it takes working on single-tenant spaces instead of the multi-retail developments Ledbetter Properties typically works on. Whatever the issue, Ledbetter Properties does its best to develop a solution. And in times when a retailer’s fate is out of control – i.e., the unfortunate tales of stores such as Circuit City, Borders or Goody’s – Ledbetter Properties is quick to redevelop spaces and attract new tenants. “We actually had three Goody’s in our portfolio and it took us less than a year to fill all three of them up, which is wonderful,” Ledbetter explains. “So to the extent that we can deploy additional capital to help tenants retrofit spaces, we will do that. Those successes along the way have been vital to our overall success today and our occupancy rate right now, which is well into 93-plus percent.” During the market downturn, Ledbetter Properties never laid off a single person and was able to stay busy and keep employees engaged. As the economy begins to pick up, Ledbetter says retail devel-

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Retail Merchandiser - July/August 2013

Retail Merchandiser - July/August 2013
Digital Messaging
How to Bring New Life to the Center Store
Fall Toy Preview 2013
WWWDMAGIC 2013 Fashion Preview
Hispanic Footwear
Firm Fashion Fixture
Macy’s Magic
Generating Buzz
Looking Sharp
On the Trend
Shoe Sensation
Victorinox Swiss Army Inc.
Hiller’s Market
Patrick James Inc.
Art Van Furniture
Fairway Market
Architec Housewares
Easy Rest Adjustable Sleep Systems
Burnstad’s Market
Shoe Carnival Inc.
Destination XL
Hibbett Sports
R.H. Ledbetter Properties
Goodwill of Central Arizona
Beyond the Rack LLC
Cymax Canada
Diamond Nexus
New & Notable

Retail Merchandiser - July/August 2013