Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Louisville, MS, Moves Forward to Achieve Retail Development Opportunities


PRESS RELEASE:
Tupelo, MS, October 20, 2014…As the largest city in Winston
County, Louisville has established itself as a regional hub for products and services in East Central Mississippi. With a prime location along Highway 25 and the community’s entrepreneurial spirit, Louisville leaders are eager to capitalize on these advantages to build a stronger community and economy.
The City was devastated by a deadly tornado in April 2014 that tragically took 10 lives and destroyed hundreds of homes and businesses. Yet, the resilient City continues to move forward with an attitude of optimism.

“Louisville has taken some tough blows in recent years with a down economy and a devastating tornado. However, we always get up, and I expect Louisville to continue making positive strides with a stronger economy,” said Louisville Mayor Will Hill.

To achieve Louisville’s goal, the City has partnered with The Retail Coach, a national retail recruitment and development consulting firm.


“What impressed me most about The Retail Coach was the team’s interest in knowing the community and their willingness to visit and understand existing businesses; all while collecting the necessary data to identify Louisville’s weaknesses and strengths,” said Hill. “Most importantly, we were impressed by the team’s interest in recruiting retail to the community, rather than just data collecting.”
Retail Study Components
The Retail Coach will evaluate actual consumer demand through studies including a Retail Trade Area determination and Retail Gap/Opportunity Analysis. The analysis will illuminate which retail categories in Louisville are exhibiting deficiencies or leakages, which occur when residents shop in surrounding communities rather than their own hometown.

“Our primary goals with The Retail Coach are to make our community more marketable by collecting the appropriate data to be competitive,” explains Mayor Hill. “We want this partnership to be an educational experience for what we have, what we are lacking, and what we as a community can do to provide more services and products that will contribute towards a stronger economy.”

Further research underway includes demographic, socioeconomic, psychographic and workforce profiles. Additionally, an assessment of Louisville’s primary retail corridors will expose new development and redevelopment opportunities.

On-the-Ground Research
The Retail Coach team will conduct interviews with existing retailers and other City stakeholders to assess the current retail environment. The findings will be compiled and used to identify and recruit retail developers and businesses that are most likely to be conducive in Louisville.

“The Retail Trade Area is where retailers derive approximately 85% of their business. The Secondary Retail Trade Area is where retailers derive the remainder of their business,” said Joseph Koon, Regional Project Director of The Retail Coach. “Defining an exact Retail Trade Area is the foundational tool for positioning Louisville for successful retail expansion.”

Additionally, The Retail Coach will develop customized community marketing tools and site profiles for the targeted retailers and restaurants.

“We must view Louisville through the eyes of a retailer when identifying sites that can be developed or redeveloped,” continues Koon. “Once a retailer or developer shows interest, we provide them with potential sites that satisfy their criteria, so our on the ground approach is extremely crucial.”

Workshop for Existing Businesses
All of The Retail Coach’s findings and strategies will be presented to local businesses during two free Downtown Retail Workshops that will be announced by the City of Louisville in the near future.

“With a better understanding of the spending patterns and purchasing behaviors of consumers, we can help current owners and managers better target their marketing and offer more of the products that Louisville visitors and residents want,” said Koon.

“We look forward to gaining the knowledge of Louisville that will give us a competitive edge in the retail market,” continues Mayor Hill. “I firmly believe a community not willing to change is a community not willing to grow.”

The Retail Coach has worked in more than 275 cities throughout the United States during the past 15 years to assist local governments, chambers of commerce, and economic development organizations in successfully recruiting retail.

For more information about the City of Louisville, visit www.cityoflouisvillems.com.
For more information about The Retail Coach, visit www.theretailcoach.net.