A fall retail forum is scheduled to take place at the Ida Lee Park Recreation Center on Thursday, Sept. 20. Members of the Leesburg Economic Development Commission, as well as town staff, will discuss the importance of bringing business throughout the Leesburg area.
Back in May, the top 10 retail opportunities were revealed to a room full of local business owners. Economic Commission member Ara Bagdasarian said that dollars are continuing to leave the local community because certain items are not available in the town.
Attendees received a retail market analysis for the town, highlighting unmet retail demands that local retailers can take advantage of within the local market. They also received copies of a gap analysis, household expenditures, demographics and population growth projections.
“I think this information is incredibly relevant because it gives a clear, factual snapshot on what people are spending money on outside of the area,” Bagdasarian said on Wednesday. “The second forum differs a little bit from the first one in that we’re really trying to give some clear next steps for the attendees on how to act on this information.”
Economic development manager Marantha Edwards said that some of the first session attendees have been asked to present how they used the information they received four months ago to make decisions about merchandising and selecting retail tenants for vacant retail space.
“Retail Opportunity Forum II will deliver information about which of these retail products Leesburg businesses could add to their offerings or could be the basis for starting a retail business,” Edwards said in an email, adding that residents spend around $2 billion dollars outside of Leesburg each year.
“The market data is not commonly available to the owners/operators of small businesses due to cost," she said. "An analysis and application of the market data will be presented to help local businesses better understand which retail opportunities are most likely to be successful.”
Edwards said that the commission and staff are doing everything possible to improve the success of the town’s local businesses. Brokers, retailers, property owners, and stakeholders are invited to attend Thursday’s forum in order to find out exactly how.
The event is free and open to the public. For more information, or to register for this event, contact Edwards at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 703-737-7019.