The Czech retail market once again proved its appeal to retail brands, with 38 new arrivals last year. That is the same figure as in 2021 when the influx of 38 new brands was partly the result of the postponement of some entries due to the pandemic. These numbers represent a roughly 50% increase compared to 2019 (22 brands) and 2020 (25 brands), according to the Cushman & Wakefield analysis of the Czech retail market in 2022.
Jan Kotrbáček, Partner & Head of the CEE Retail Agency team, Cushman & Wakefield says: “The retail market has endured plenty of trials and tribulations in recent years, but it continues to attract shoppers – which is great news for retailers. Ongoing discussions with them at an international level have shown their positive sentiment as regards the need to keep growing, upgrading their outlets, and promoting their brands. The traditional gateway for brands into the CEE region has proven to be the Czech Republic, because of its purchasing power and the continued popularity of Prague with international visitors, who are a major source of retail revenue.”
Fashion and household goods
A significant milestone for the Czech market last year was the opening of two luxury fashion boutiques by Balenciaga and Chanel on Prague’s Pařížská street. The fashion segment is well represented as usual, whether in terms of clothing brands (e.g. Maje, Sandro and Jacadi Paris this year), accessories and jewellery (Messika, Teilor), footwear (Buzz), or fashionable sportswear (JOTT, Sport Vision). The furniture, household goods and electronics segment also featured prominently last year (eleven brands). Czechia attracted retailers dealing in furniture, such as Minotti and Stosa Cucine (kitchens), in mattresses, e.g. Dorelan and Materasso, HP in the field of electronics, Home&You (re-entry) and TecTake in household goods, and Tefal in kitchen equipment. Notable mentions in other segments include the opening of the first Czech LEGO store and in the food and beverage segment the Cappuccineria café and the House of Julius Meinl delicatessen.
French and Italian brands predominate
As in previous years, most brands chose Prague for their first Czech store – with sixteen opened in shopping centres and fourteen on the capital’s high streets. Six stores can also be found in office buildings, where the openings include several showrooms of premium furniture retailers, a fitness centre, and a café on account of their target clientele. Among the new arrivals, France was the most strongly represented country, with most of its nine brands selling clothing or accessories. An additional seven brands were Italian – mainly furniture and mattress dealers, along with two cafés.
Market activity continues unabated
Although the recent pandemic and associated restrictions on retail operations caused some apprehension about the future of the sector, brand activity in the Czech market continues unabated. Cushman & Wakefield’s Retail Agency team handled two hundred transactions last year, with a total area of approximately 60,000 sqm – a similar figure to the previous year. And the team can already see several substantial transactions on the horizon this year too, among others in the food and beverage segment.
Jan Kotrbáček adds: “The American fast-food chain Popeyes will be opening its first restaurant in the Czech Republic, and its arrival on our market will be the biggest entry of an F&B player since 2017 when Pizza Hut reopened here. The launch of the first restaurant of the Italian chain Rossopomodoro in the Palladium shopping centre and the entry of the Italian wine & food concept Signorvino will also be major events.”
Market activity will also be stimulated by some fresh, high-quality commercial developments that will offer new retail leasing opportunities. In Prague, the 100 Yards project is currently under construction on Na Příkopě street, and on Pařížská street the projects Pařížská 25 and Pařížská 30 (Fairmont Golden Prague Hotel) are set to open following renovation. The new multifunctional project Masaryčka is also scheduled to open and the Letňany Shopping Centre will be expanded.
New retail space is being developed in Brno, too: the Šumavská Tower Shopping Gallery is to open there next year, and overall redevelopment work will begin on the site of the new multifunctional project Dornych (scheduled for completion in 2026).
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