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LONDON-According to an international survey conducted by CB Richard Ellis, retailers look first to London when considering a city to open a store in. England’s major city attracts 60% of all international retailers.

“Now more than ever, retailers are less concerned with ‘markets’ and more with ‘shopping populations’ – it is often the city and not the country which is important,” says Peter Gold, head of EMEA Cross Border Retail of CB Richard Ellis. “Our study emphasizes this micro-level focus, showing that the expansion of an international retailer into one city does not necessarily imply they will expand across other cities in the same country.”

Paris ranks second, attracting 49% of retailers, while New York City comes in third at 47%. According to the report, a surprise entry to the list was Dubai. The city ranked fourth with 46% of all international retailers. The ranking “confirms its position as a new force in global retailing,” CBRE executives say. Other cities on the list include Madrid, Moscow, Berlin, Munich, Barcelona, Tokyo, Singapore, Hamburg, Hong Kong and Milan.

Nearly half of the surveyed retailers had some form of a presence in all of the three top cities. Still, the report summary states, “the globalization of retail is still at a relatively early stage. Luxury retailers as well as clothing and footwear companies are the most international. The luxury firms are present in over 27 countries, while most other retailers can be found in 14 countries.

The United Kindgom is the country with the highest number of international retailers, at 58%. Spain ranks second with 48%, France third with 46% and U.A.E fourth with 45%. The United States took the tenth position, falling three places from last years report. Germany, China, Russia, Italy and Switzerland all rank above the US.

“American retailers in the survey have clearly made a conscious effort to develop a comprehensive coverage of the global market,” says Anthony Buono, executive managing director of CBRE Retail Services. “US retailers are more likely to be present in Asia than European retailers – and are more likely to be in Europe than are Asian operators. The Americas is, however, the least favored target region for retailers domiciled elsewhere in the globe; European and Asian retailers tend to open in each other’s region rather than attempt to break into North America, possibly because of the well established,highly competitive and – in some cases – already saturated market in the United States.”

The survey, which was conducted by Peter Gold, Dominic Stead, Anthony Buono, Raymond Torto, Nick Axford and Natasha Patel of CBRE, questioned 280 retailers across 67 countries.

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