· Our portfolio contributed to Mirvac becoming net carbon positive nine years ahead of target, with all shopping centres providing renewable electricity
· We’ve delivered more than 450 community programs and relaunched our family and friends program, Together & Co, to be more inclusive of all modern Australian families
· Our Shelter@Mirvac program partners with some of our country’s most inspiring organisations to drive change throughout our communities – for example our partner SCR Group provided 2700 items of culturally appropriate clothing to 970 Afghan refugees arriving in Australia
· We provided space to OzHarvest for volunteers to pack 13,275 hampers containing 112 tonnes of food
· In partnership with Reckitt Benckiser we supported First Nation communities in Western NSW through the Dharriwaa Elders Group by delivering 12,000 units of Dettol hygiene products to help in mitigating the spread of Covid-19
· We’ve continued to respect and love our LGBTQIA+ community with our ‘Welcome Here’ partnership in all centres, in cooperation with Australia’s largest sexuality and gender diverse health organisation, ACON.
· We announced a five-year partnership with the Biennale of Sydney, enabling invaluable opportunities to connect and inspire our communities by delivering more than 60 culturally rich experiences.
Partnering with forward thinking values-based organisations is critical for our business. They push us to contribute in new ways, provide more meaningful support and inspire our local communities, and we are honoured to work alongside them.
ARO: What are some big trends in how consumers interact with retail?
KM: We are all re-evaluating our lives, how we spend our time and money, where we want to live and our impact on the planet. Real-life experiences are valued, and our customers are prioritising human interaction and genuine connection without distraction. They want a place to come and be inspired to do good, while recharging in a safe and easy way.
The key trends we’re seeing include:
· Service: We are in the age of the customer, which means great service, a personalised experience, a quality product, and human connection are must haves. Covid fast tracked the importance of service, from contactless pickup to efficient navigation and clear communication. We also found our customers will change loyalty for better service.
· Choice: Sometimes we want to take time to browse, touch and feel, and other times we want to pick something up quickly and conveniently.
· Purpose: We support inclusivity and being a force for good. Sustainability and governance enable our partners and customers to align their investments and spend to their values, while providing a platform for our retail partners to grow and do the same.
· Fun and learning: Covid has reignited the love of fun and learning in our communities. We launched WeMake to support this very desire with a wide variety of affordable, accessible and fun workshops.
ARO: How are shopping centres helping retailers in this challenging environment?
KM: For customers, we became a place for essential services, medical and health visits, and a place to simply get away from home for the short period of time allowed.
Retailers were dramatically impacted, so our role changed to become a financial supporter, hygiene enforcer and provider of critical information to support the survival of their businesses.
A big priority was mental health, and we extended our Employee Assistance Program to our partners and their families.
With the support of the SCCA, our industry played a significant role in deciphering safety information and its impacts on day-to-day operations of small to medium sized businesses. Support extended beyond business information to facilitating complex state-based government support legislation for financial grants.
ARO: What are some of the ways Mirvac is embracing omnichannel retail?
KM: We see omnichannel as an extraordinary opportunity for business owners in retail to grow and so we have been undertaking the following initiatives:
1. Our retail and industrial arms offer fulfilment by Mirvac
2. Central collection points and parcel hubs in partnership with Australia Post
3. Dynamic storage options for partners
4. We offer rapid delivery design and build solutions for stores, with smart store support to provide critical data and insights for our brand partners.
5. We launched WeShow, our flexible, rapid turnaround and sustainable retail model, which makes it easy for small businesses with limited capital and digital-only brands to overcome traditional barriers to entering physical retail.
ARO: What innovations are coming up for Mirvac in 2022?
KM: Our ambition is to be more than a property solution: we can share data, insights and ideas; add value by co-creating solutions; reimagine financial contracts; bring partners together for the betterment of the collective; develop new business models; and offer solutions that play to our cross-disciplined expertise.
One of the movements we are heavily investing in is fashion start-ups and social-commerce platforms that connect brands with humans. We recently invested in Mys Tyler, which is an app building a community of body empowered women across the globe and creating a better fashion experience for them, while also tackling the fashion industry’s $1 trillion returns issue. We truly believe the future of fashion will integrate sustainability, convenience, and physical and digital spaces.
This article was published in the Australian Retail Outlook, powered by KPMG