Capital Shopping Centres, the owner of Lakeside and the Trafford Centre, has announced that it is changing its name to Intu Properties as it looks to create a nationwide consumer-facing shopping centre brand.
The company, which welcomes more than 320 million customers visits a year to its shopping centres, is investing 25 million pounds, of which 7 million pounds will be focused to the new brand creation and rollout, while 8 million pounds will be spent on improving its digital infrastructure.
The additional 10 million pounds will be spent on the acquisition and start-up phase of intu.co.uk, its new fashion-focused, mobile-enabled e-commerce site. The site, which is expected to launch in April, will offer products from a range of retailers, as well as feature editorial content such as virtual fashion events and content curated by fashion stylists.
The name change will be effect from February 18, and this will be seen across the company’s shopping centres through brand and visual identity from May, where Intu will be incorporated into the names of its directly-managed centres.
The rebrand will also include physical changes to the shopping centres including the installation of a new fibre optic network for every centre, which will enable WiFi throughout its shopping centres. In March Trafford Centre will launch free WiFi, followed by Lakeside in April, Eldon Square, Newcastle, in May and all centres by February 2014.
David Fischel, chief executive, commented: "With over half the UK population visiting our shopping centres each year, we have the scale to seize the opportunities provided by the changes in the retail marketplace.
"We are investing £25 million in digital infrastructure, an e-commerce website and a new brand. We very much look forward to implementing the initiatives announced today, which mark an exciting next phase in the evolution of our market-leading UK shopping centre business, to the benefit of customers, retailers, staff and investors."