• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
1m 56s

National chains finding success in Alaska

By Shannon Ballard 6:11 AM March 31, 2014
ANCHORAGE –

A rush of new business around Anchorage points to a recent trend — national chains heading north to find success in the Last Frontier.

Perhaps you’ve noticed all the construction, or are counting down the days until your favorite chain comes to Alaska.

“It adds competition to the city,” said Anchorage resident Stephen Gillies. “We’re big enough now we can handle it, I think.”

“Over time, the smaller mom-and-pop shops are the ones who suffer,” said longtime Alaskan Travis Reft. “They can’t compete with the big money.”

Cabela’s will be the next big chain to open in Alaska. Its grand opening is scheduled for April 10. Manager Kevin Weeks said Cabela’s has been researching the state for years.

“It’s great being next to a great retailer like Target and across the street from the expansion of the outlet mall coming next year,” Weeks said. ”There’s just all sorts of growth down here and its going to be exciting.”

Bill Popp, president and CEO of the Anchorage Economic Development Corporation, said Alaskans have more disposable income here than most other states.

“We like to shop and our total square footage sale — anecdotal, from what we are told — are incredibly successful for any number of national chains that have set systemwide sales records for individual chains,” Popp said. “Word gets around on that and people get excited about that when they start to think about being part of this very dynamic retail market.”

Word of success stories in Alaska entices outside retailers and restaurants.

“We just want to be part of that,” Weeks said.

Cabela’s hired nearly 300 people to staff its first store in Alaska.

If more chains continue to make Anchorage home, AEDC anticipates it’ll have a hard time finding enough bodies to fill the jobs.

“We’ve got a really tight labor market,” Popp said. “Last year’s unemployment rate was five percent.”

It’s the reason he expects chain development to slow down.

“These developments come in cycles and then it slows down for a while, kind of goes flat, doesn’t go backwards but that’s the history that’s shown in Alaska,” Popp said.

We may be hitting the end of a cycle, but the big-name chains are finding out about Alaska and the opportunities that exist here for their long-term success.

Latest Stories

  • News

    Downtown street party, multiple shootings overnight keep Anchorage police busy

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Nov 23, 12:00

    Anchorage police responded to multiple incidents early Sunday morning, including an unruly street party and two isolated shootings. Downtown street party The first occurred at around 2:30 a.m., according to a release from the Anchorage Police Department. Police responded to a call that shots had been fired in the downtown area. Officers discovered a crowd […]

  • News

    UAF computer science students seek software proposals

    by Associated Press on Nov 23, 10:45

    Computer science students at the University of Alaska Fairbanks are looking for software design proposals as part of their learning process. UAF officials say the projects allow public service and private organizations, as well as governments, to get free software while students get experience. Officials say more than 65 successful projects have been developed by […]

  • News

    Diversity a theme at Walker transition conference in Anchorage

    by Shannon Ballard on Nov 22, 18:42

    It would be easy to have a closed-door discussion about the critical issues that face Alaska, but Gov.-elect Bill Walker says the conversation should belong to all Alaskans. “We get the best input the more people we have involved in the process,” said Walker. There is some risk associated with doing that. The bigger risk […]

  • Weather

    Evening News weather, Nov. 22

    by KTVA Weather on Nov 22, 18:20

    Clouds have invaded our space for the weekend with little moisture here in the Anchorage area. Daytime highs remain in the mid 30s with light winds as we head into Saturday night. Sunday brings more of the same conditions with increasing clouds across the Bowl. We’ll remain under this dry spell going into Thanksgiving. Sunshine […]

  • Sports

    UAA volleyball signs 2 Dimond players

    by KTVA Sports on Nov 22, 18:02

    A pair of Dimond Lynx are heading to the level of volleyball, but the trip is a short one.

  • News

    Government Hill gives back, continues holiday tradition for one resident

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Nov 22, 17:02

      Putting up Christmas lights and decorations is a holiday tradition for Government Hill resident Jeff Fowler. “It started when we lived on the south end of town,” said Fowler. “One at a time, started buying them and when we moved here, new and more stuff just started showing up.“ Over the years, the grand […]

  • News

    Obama highlights Sitka School District’s efforts in technology

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Nov 22, 13:00

    This week, the Sitka School District got a shout-out from President Barack Obama. Superintendent of Sitka Schools Mary Wegner was in Washington, D.C. on Wednesday, joining more than 100 superintendents from across the country gathered together at the White House for the ConnectED to the Future conference. The day-long event recognized some of the nation’s […]

  • News

    Fairbanks prisoner accused of soliciting murder

    by Associated Press on Nov 22, 12:01

    An imprisoned former chiropractor and gun dealer from Fairbanks has been accused of attempting to solicit the murder of federal officers while behind bars. The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner (http://goo.gl/VVMn92 ) reports Guy Christopher Mannino, 56, has been in prison since Oct. 2013 awaiting sentencing for federal weapons charges. The office of the U.S. Attorney says […]