Tile Shop Inks Lease for First Area Store

By Amos Maki

A specialty retailer of high-quality tile will open its first location in Memphis later this year.

The Tile Shop is in the final stages of negotiating a roughly 20,000-square-foot lease at 1245 Germantown Parkway, between Cordova Road and Autumn Creek Drive, in the Germantown Square Shopping Center in Cordova, according to company representative Lindsey Rose.

The Tile Shop store, which will occupy the space vacated by Hastings Music, is expected to open in October, Rose said.

The Tile Shop, which has an average store size of 23,000 square feet, offers customers a selection of more than 5,000 types of tiles and natural stone products. Showrooms typically feature between 30 and 70 bathroom and kitchen vignettes to tour and touch, giving customers real-life ideas as they undergo their tile projects.

The Tile Shop touts its customer service experience, which guides contractors and homeowners through the entire project experience, from selecting the right product to proper installation.

“Through our store layout and sales associates, who offer project planning, design counsel, tile recommendations and installation guidance, we are able to meaningfully connect with our customers and meet their individual project needs with affordable tile and natural stone products, building a foundation for an ongoing relationship,” said Carl Randazzo, senior vice president of retail for The Tile Shop, in a statement.

The Tile Shop, www.tileshop.com, is in growth mode and plans on increasing its presence to 108 locations nationwide by the end of 2014, including 20 new stores and 15 to 20 remodeled stores. The Tile Shop, which is based in Minneapolis, Minn., opened five stores during the first quarter, including four in new markets.

The Tile Shop is the second major retailer to announce it is entering the Memphis market in 2014. In April, Texas-based retailer Conn’s confirmed it will be opening a store in Southeast Memphis. The retailer will open a Conn’s HomePlus this month in 42,296 square feet at the Cross Creek Shopping Center at Riverdale and Tenn. 385 that Babies “R” Us vacated.

• Shelby County commercial real estate sales experienced a double-digit increase in the first quarter when compared to the same three-month period a year ago, according to real estate information company Chandler Reports, www.chandlerreports.com.

The 223 sales in the first quarter were up 13.8 percent from 196 sales in the first quarter of 2013. Commercial sales volume for the quarter was $327 million, up from $254.9 million a year ago, and the average sales price for a commercial property was $1.5 million, with an average price per square foot of $37.34.

Vacant land and agricultural properties claimed the most sales in the quarter, with 52 averaging $450,520 per transaction. The 52 vacant land or agricultural property sales in the quarter were up 23.8 percent from 42 a year ago. Retail sales came in second, with 48 averaging $1.7 million per transaction. The 42 office sales in the quarter were up 71.4 percent from 28 retail sales in the first quarter of 2013.

The increase in commercial sales during the first quarter is a continuation of sales volume momentum that developed last year and has carried over into 2014.

Shelby County recorded 829 commercial sales in 2013, the most commercial sales recorded since 2008. Industrial, office and vacant land sales all saw improvement in 2013, while retail and multifamily sales experienced slight decreases.