GM, Garden State Plaza
Jay Daly is the General Manager of Garden State Plaza—the biggest (depending on who you ask) mall in New Jersey and one of the biggest in the Northeast. The enormous facility includes nearly 300 stores, sprawls well over 2 million square feet, and has many more acres of property beyond the buildings themselves.
The mall is undergoing its own transformation, like converting the old JCPenney store into 15 smaller units. And creating a brand new mixed-use development on the location. Management is also adding more experiential options for people, including entertainment and dining. While the retail shops are closed on Sundays because of Bergen County’s “Blue Laws,” the entertainment and dining options can stay open, bringing foot traffic to the mall. Jay is dealing with all of that.
We talk about the counterintuitive trend of online stores now creating an influx of brick-and-mortar retail locations into the mall’s physical space. He hints at the types of stores he’d love to see at the mall. Jay also breaks down the typical revenue model of a store’s lease and talks about the intricacies of accounting for certain types of sales. Consider an online sale that offers in-store pickup; should the retailer pay a percentage of that sale on their lease agreement to the mall?
We also learn about his career: moving from the restaurant industry to property management. And of course, we can’t forget…the difficulties of parking, the pandemic, and even the recent flood!