Nation’s Largest Shopping Center Owner Makes $5 Million Investment, Plans to Collaborate With Esports League

Simon Property Group, the nation’s largest shopping center owner, is turning to competitive multiplayer video gaming to steer traffic into its malls.

The Indianapolis-based company is betting that stocking retail centers with focused gamers in the multibillion-dollar esports industry might attract a wider variety of visitors as it struggles to redefine the shopping experience.

The move comes as malls are losing anchor and secondary tenants at a fast rate – already more than 7,000 store closings have been announced this year – amid a sweeping shift in consumer spending that’s still shaking out.

And it’s the latest vote of confidence in competitive gaming as a development or leasing prospect. Earlier this year, real estate services firm Jones Lang LaSalle announced a partnership with GameWorks to expand the esports entertainment provider’s entertainment-and-restaurant concept nationwide.


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