Nine young retailers are coming together under one roof in New York to test a new, smaller-format mall, as the industry experiments with ways to draw in shoppers.
The space, called HiO, opens this week inside Acadia Realty's City Point shopping complex in downtown Brooklyn. It will include eight international retailers, some of which are entering the U.S. for the first time with this location: women's accessories line Parfois, travel items by Campo Marzio, sunglasses brand Hawkers, soap and cosmetics by Compagnie de Provence, embroidered bags by Emma Lomax, spa line L:A Bruket, candles and oil diffusers by Skandinavisk, and notebook line Moleskine. Makeup brand Winky Lux, which already has a presence in the U.S. and started in New York, will also be there.
"The market with the biggest opportunity to grow is still the U.S. for retailers," HiO co-founder Sever Garcia told CNBC.
There's still a lot of trepidation, however, especially from international companies, to grow in North America because of waves of store closures and bankruptcies, Garcia said. "These companies are cautious ... but they are interested." (CNBC reported earlier this year on a handful of international brands already starting to grow in the U.S., including three that are moving into the new HiO shop.)