Lack of marketing contributes to lower mall footfalls, says MIEA


PETALING JAYA (Nov 28): A lack of concerted marketing efforts has led to lower footfalls in malls within certain parts of the country, compounding the effects of the existing oversupply of space, said the Malaysian Institute of Estate Agents (MIEA) past president Nixon Paul.

Citing shopping malls such as The Curve, 1 Utama and others located within the same 5km radius in Petaling Jaya, he noted that some of these malls thrive despite being close to each other.

“Look at Petaling Jaya — all the malls are within a 5km radius, what kind of feasibility that was done before property developers developed these malls?” he said at a press conference held by MIEA today.

He stressed that efforts must be made to raise awareness about a mall’s location and to manage it properly.

“People want to rent these places but they didn’t know these places’ existence. For a retail space, if you want it to thrive, you need to manage it, not sell it off just like that.

“There is a mismatch between fair market value and what the property owners are asking. The market is slow in commercial sector because there is no ROI (return of investments) as all sellers are asking for highly inflated prices.

“All past reports have been wasted on statistics, telling you that there is overhang or oversupply. You cannot generalise the property market — everything needs to be compartmentalised.

“When you generalise, it’s a very wrong way to reflect what is happening on the ground. The commercial market is actually thriving and sometimes there is no transaction because of mismatch of value as buyers are very discerning nowadays,” he said.

Commenting on the office market, MIEA president Eric Lim said Malaysia is still one of the large office space providers in the Southeast Asian region with total office space supply of about 114 million sq ft.

“For the 114 million sq ft office space supply, the average occupancy rate is about 78.5%, about a 1% slide compared to last year.”