Storefront launches for underserved market
Storefront, a San Francisco based startup has launched as a marketplace for short-term commercial real estate space. Storefront COO and Co-Founder Tristan Pollock tells AGBeat that they’re “changing the way retail space is made accessible.”
Their website boasts that it is “the easiest way to open your pop-up shop,” and entering an email address allows users to get started searching and listing commercial real estate spaces that accommodate short term leases. Storefront charges a percentage fee of the booking price and works with vacant spaces, malls, retailers, and other high foot traffic spaces. Pollock said, “We connect awesome retailers and e-commerce companies with beautiful spaces.”
Co-Founder Erik Eliason and Pollock both have roots in retail. Pollock said, “Erik consulted with top retailers via 8thBridge and I worked for BestBuy.com and their umbrella brands before starting Storefront. This kept us on top of the latest retail trends and we saw e-commerce starting to come offline.”
Storefront helps those struggling to find space
“We also saw friends and family struggle with finding and starting pop-up shops, as well as running traditional long-term stores,” Pollock added. “From these conversations we plotted out the pain points and brainstormed about how we could find a solution. At the same time, retail vacancies across the US are at almost 10%, double the historic average. We wanted to find a solution that turned these empty and underutilized spaces back into stores.”
Not only does this serve retailers looking to set up pop-up shops, it is an ideal marketplace for companies looking to sublease space for the remainder of their lease term, and for any organization in transition.
Based on Storefront’s headquarters being in San Francisco combined with their service appealing to a market often ignored by commercial real estate professionals that focus (as they should) on traditional leases, Storefront could easily see their first round of funding in 2013 and see substantial growth as they meet a need that many companies and retailers have and simply don’t know where to turn.