Yesterday, Alexander & Baldwin (NYSE: ALEX) announced their election of REIT status. In concert with this change, they announced the appointment of Jim Mead as CFO and Tom Lewis as a new board member. Ho’omaika’i and congratulations to the team!

As a legacy company founded in 1870, Alexander & Baldwin is a premier owner of commercial real estate in Hawai’i and one the state’s largest landowners. We were proud to assist the team in their evolution and look forward to our continued efforts together.

WeinPlus serves as the principal strategic advisor for industry leading public and private real estate owners, a top-tier grocery retailer as well as several boutique real estate firms nationwide. Give us a call to discuss your needs at 727.386.9346.

Vail Resorts moves East

This spring Vail Resort extended its reach east when it acquired Vermont’s Stowe Mountain.

Historically Vail has used the late spring and summer to beef up acquisitions (like Canada’s Whistler Backcomb and Austrailia’s Perisher Mountain) in an effort to market their $859 Epic Pass, offering unlimited access to 45 ski areas around the world.

The Stowe purchase creates a compelling reason for skiers in New York and Boston to have a weekend spot in addition to Vail’s destination locations in Colorado and Utah.

Epic Pass sales now bring in 40% of lift income as well as valuable customer data, driving additional acquisitions, including smaller mountain destinations outside Detriot, Minneapolis, and Chicago.

With Epic Pass’ annual growth rate of 16% and an expected 650,000 passes for the 2017-2018 season, Vail Resorts has shattered the concept that season passes are just for locals.

In the News…

Digitally native brands like Glossier and Outdoor Voices view physical stores as“not about revenue but about community,” says Outdoor Voices CEO Tyler Haney. Selling stuff is no longer the point.  

Warby Parker, who has already mastered blending online with physical stores, now adds in-app prescription check to their growing list of services. It’s one more way to remove friction from the buying experience., China’s version of Amazon, has started flying heavy-load drones with payloads weighing more than a ton on fixed routes from warehouses to special landing pads in rural villages, avoiding China’s infrastructure challenges.

Want to delight and engage your customers? Take a page from Oreo where they solicited customer ideas for new flavors (kettle corn and avocado) then sent single servings to individual fans#myoreocreation has over 17k posts on Instagram.

Finally, just one mention of Amazon/Whole Foods…Within a 10-mile radius Whole Foods reaches a population of 144mn; only 5% below Kroger (at 151mn) despite operating ~80% fewer stores.

Rachel Elias Wein

Rachel Elias Wein founded WeinPlus, a strategy and management consultancy focused exclusively on retail and real estate organizations, in 2008. A consultant to Fortune 500 companies and an experienced development executive, Ms. Wein serves as the principal strategic advisor for industry-leading public and private real estate owners, a top-tier grocery retailer, as well as several boutique real estate firms nationwide.

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