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CELEBRATING 30 YEARS!
That sentiment has been echoed time and again as RNS marks 30 years of developments which have brought quality retail to thousands of consumers, in both urban and more rural areas. These successful and sustainable developments have become the heartbeat of the communities they serve – easily accessible, welcoming spaces where the retail offering is exciting and varied, and there’s ample opportunity for family and friends to meet and spend leisure time together.
“Retail is one of the most exciting industries in the world,” says Gavin. “It’s creative, challenging, inspiring, fun, hard work, innovative, demanding, invigorating… and significantly more. It employs millions of people and gives pleasure to millions. The industry has fired us up every single day for the past three decades. Our current pipeline of developments is strongly focused on successful and sustainable convenience retail within burgeoning new market segments in South Africa.”
Convenience retail on a winning streak
The recent opening of Harvest Place, a 17, 500m² convenience shopping centre in Glen Marais in Kempton Park, is proof that convenience is a commodity which shows no sign of losing its lustre. As the retail strategist for Harvest Place, Gavin says the culture of convenience has emerged as a powerful force, shaping consumer behaviour, influencing retail strategies and impacting local economies.
“Convenience is underpinned by a need to save time and minimise effort. It’s the hallmark of an era in which both parents and caregivers often work, and technological advances have resulted in a dramatic acceleration of the pace of work as well as longer hours. Consumers are more time-poor than ever before, and often exhausted at the thought of shopping.
“Covid-19, ongoing power outages and latterly, steeply rising fuel prices, have all added to the appeal of proximate neighbourhood centres. During winter loadshedding, shoppers are less keen to venture too far from home to pick up groceries or ready-meals. A short drive to a neighbourhood centre is far more convenient and also helps to keep monthly petrol costs down,” Gavin adds.
Successful convenience centres feature award-wining designs and aesthetically pleasing environments which have appeal across all age groups and traditionally become popular meeting places, says Gavin. By nature of their offering they are also less likely to see their trading densities eroded by e-commerce.
This retail format is also proving its worth in more rural township areas where RNS is very active. Modern retail centres have become the centre of these communities and a great source of pride to residents.
“In more rural surroundings we provide quality retail tailored to a keenly aspirational market,” Gavin comments. “Our grocery anchors are powerful drawcards, and are supported by a good range of fashion stores, useful services and popular eateries. There is free parking, designated areas for taxis, and we often add a value component which draws feet from further afield and drives further economic activity.”
Under Gavin’s inspirational leadership, RNS has gone from strength to strength and its ‘runway’ of developments stretches years ahead.
As Jose Paulino de Souza of Ganeloman Developers says, “Gavin’s experience, dedication, and commitment to delivering world-class developments and acquiring a good range of tenants is masterful. We, as developers, couldn’t have landed in better hands. RNS is fundamentally a pivotal cornerstone to any successful centre development.”