November 19, 2012
By Jenna Blakely, General Assignment Reporter
Pacific Business News
Kaneohe Ranch Management Ltd. plans to continue Kailua’s renovations on a smaller scale after bringing in national chains like Pier 1 Imports, Whole Foods Market and, soon, Target.
A decade ago, Kailua residents had to leave town to shop, but once Target (NYSE: TGT) moves in, Kaneohe Ranch President and CEO Mitchell D`Olier said residents can now find everything they need without having to leave the Windward Oahu town. Whole Foods Market (NYSE: WFM) opened its second Oahu store in Kailua in April.
But after Target opens, D`Olier isn’t planning on bringing in any more big chains.
“Whole Foods and Target are desirable to have and they enhance the community,” he said. “But for the future, we want it to be a place for smaller merchants and we’re always on the lookout for cool, new restaurants.”
Kimo Steinwascher, executive vice president and chief operating officer, said Kaneohe Ranch has at least a dozen leases that will come up within the next five years.
As more renovations occur, he anticipates that many of Kailua’s smaller merchants will upgrade to the newer locations, he said. Brokers regularly call for open space, he added, which allows the town’s major landlord to be selective in who moves in. For the past two years, they’ve had zero vacancy.
But, D’Olier pointed out that they are moving forward with caution and don’t want to put any one out of business by adding too much of the same thing.
“We have a loyalty to our merchants,” he said. “I want it to be a retail place where everyone can be successful.”
D’Olier added that when Whole Foods moved in, some local businesses were worried about lunch business being taken away. While that may have occurred in the beginning, he said it has calmed down and business has returned to normal.