Sasseur REIT downplays concerns over e-commerce, behavioral shifts

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Sasseur REIT has downplayed concerns over shifts in consumer behaviours that may have arisen from COVID-19 lockdowns.

China began progressive lockdowns across the country in January 2020 to stem the coronavirus outbreak.

As a result, physical malls, including those owned by Sasseur REIT, were shuttered and consumers began enmasse adoption of online shopping.

There were concerns that these lockdowns have resulted in ineradicable shifts in consumer behaviour, which would not bode well for retail REITs.

According to a GfK China Consumer Sentiment Study in February 2020, over 40% of consumers in the country have increased their online buying frequency.

In the same survey, 50% of these consumers also intend to resume their planned purchases across all product categories, even after the virus threat abates.

Amid these developments, Anthony Ang, CEO of Sasseur REIT’s manager, highlighted three reasons why its business will not be affected by this shift.

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