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"Undeniably, the retail industry spectrum is broad,” said roundtable chair Peng Liu, as he opened the inaugural retail roundtable, held in New York City in June 2014. An associate professor of real estate at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration, Liu added that real estate spans “from the overall economy and retail market trends to technology innovation and big data; and from retail leasing negotiations to shopping center investments and financing. The retail industry is an asset-intensive business with real estate playing a critical role.” Continued growth of internet-based commerce is one source of this phenomenon, and the rise of the internet has also created a new framework for many retailers, in which electronic operations and those at physical stores are blended with each other, as demanded by the customer.


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