Self Storage Industry Ready to Take Off Internationally

Posted on May 30 2012 - 5:56pm by Winnie Hsiu

When it comes to Hollywood’s biggest blockbusters success is measured by ticket sales within the United States. Some do well while some bomb miserably. In both cases, it is often the international ticket sales that can make a difference saving bombs from costing the studio millions and making profitable movies even better.

Like Hollywood, many businesses within the United States look to expand internationally once the market at home is fairly saturated. The self storage industry is a perfect example. 

There are close to 60,000 self storage facilities in the world. Around 50,000 of them exist within the borders of the United States. The U.S. is the third most populous country in the world with roughly 313.6 million people calling it home, but is rather far down the list when it comes to density (179th; 83 per square mile).

If a country like the U.S. can find such a need for the self storage industry than many of the more densely populated countries around the world could likely use a few self storage facilities as well. More companies are starting to see that and the industry is steadily working to expand into international markets.

One company, Extra Space Storage, (not affiliated with the U.S. company of the same name) is already working on expanding after moving into a new market last year. In the past year the company opened its first self storage facility in Malaysia (117th in density with 223 people per square mile), more specifically in Jalan Chan Sow Lin, Kuala Lampur.

“We are looking at several locations. Most likely, the second facility will be located in Petaling Jaya. Penang and Johor Baru are also another option we are considering,” said chief executive officer of Extra Space Malaysia, Michael Hagbeck, in a Business Times interview recently.

According to Hagbeck, people in Kuala Lampur use self storage facilities for many of the same reasons people in the United States do. 

“We are also in the midst of building a wine storage facility which can hold up to 1,200 cases of wine,” Hagbeck added.

Extra Space also has facilities in South Korea (23rd in density with 1,261 people per square mile and Singapore (3rd in density with 18,513 people per square mile).

With such an utter lack of space places like Korea, Malaysia, and Singapore are screaming for the self storage industry to establish a strong presence. It looks like Extra Space Storage has that well in hand.

Sources Used:

“Extra Space sees room for expansion.” Business Times; 31 May 2012.

2011 SSA Fact Sheet; Self Storage Association.

List of Sovereign States and Dependent Territories by Population Density; Wikipedia.