Brick-and-mortar ain’t dead yet! Storefront, which helps businesses find short-term real-estate rentals to create ‘pop-up shops,’ has raised a $1.6 million seed funding round with participation from Mohr Davidow Ventures, Great Oaks Venture Capital and 500 Startups, among others, according to TechCrunch.
Storefront has helped over 100 local and national brands open pop-up shops over the past 6 months in San Francisco, and is led by Harvard Business School Graduate and CEO Erik Eliason. Having already helped rent 3 million square feet of retail space, the company will expand outside of the Bay Area and is already making headway in New York City.
Storefront’s only foreseeable competition would be Craiglist brokers, as more established commercial real estate businesses don’t focus on short-term rental space. Storefront also has an interesting revenue model, taking a referral fee for any purchases facilitated AFTER the space has been rented.
Even for digital retailers, pop-up shops can be a valuable boost. Warby Parker has set up pop-up shops across the East Coast, and hair product manufacturer Madison Color has emphasized that pop-up shops will be a big part of their growth strategy.