In view of the economic consequences of the corona pandemic, the german retail association (HDE) has appealed for understanding for companies that suspend the rent for their stores.
"This crisis must be about fair burden-sharing between tenants and landlords," said HDE chief executive stefan genth. "Stable rental relationships are also in the interest of the landlords. Otherwise, after the corona crisis, many places will be threatened by vacancies and a decline in city centers. This will also drag the real estate sector down with it." Genth criticized that "there are still too many property owners (…) no consequences from the special crisis situation were drawn".
The newspaper "welt am sonntag" reported that more and more retail companies were demanding concessions from the landlords of their stores, including the textile discounter takko and the retail chain tedi.
Takko stressed that the company is looking for solutions "in partnership and personal talks" with the landlords. "We are currently losing around 150 million euros per month due to the branch closures. Of course, this also brings economic bottlenecks for an otherwise solid company," a takko spokeswoman told the german press agency.
Tedi announced that the discounter was "negotiating a deferral of rent payments with every landlord". Since each rental relationship is individual, tedi "will not make any blanket regulations, but rather decisions based on partnership and with a sense of proportion. The company emphasized: "our goal is to avert a threatening imbalance in the company in the interests of our employees, customers and suppliers, and also our landlords."The corona crisis affects the stationary retail trade, with exception of food and drugstore markets massively.
The HDE did not want to comment on individual companies. In the "passauer neue presse" (saturday), genth demanded a legally regulated rent reduction of 50 percent for three months in order to reduce the economic consequences. "Overnight, we have been deprived of the basis of our business," genth told the newspaper. Since mid march around 300.000 shops closed.
Most recently, in the wake of the corona crisis, sporting goods manufacturer adidas announced that it would no longer pay the rent for its closed stores in europe as of april. This was met with harsh criticism from all parts of society. Adidas apologized and paid the rent after all. Other companies had also announced that they would suspend rent payments.