Neighborhood Goods is a startup that rethinks the traditional department store experience. Co-founder and CEO Matt Alexander calls it “a department store with a story.” Instead of a fixed landscape of racks and products from a finite number of brands, Neighborhood Goods aims for a retail experience filled with everything from unheard-of independent brands to huge international brands hosting pop-ups within the store.
Alexander sat down with the Retail Gets Real team prior to the store’s grand opening on November 17, 2018, to share how he created the department store concept of the future and what he envisions it to be.
The company has been working hard to develop the aesthetic, including events that add to the shopping experience. A restaurant will sit in the middle of the 14,000-square-foot location in Plano, Texas; 12 to 15 pop-ups will surround it, including collaborative spaces hosting complementary products. “Anything from the frames on the wall to the furniture in the space to even the cutlery inside the restaurant and the cookware in the kitchen,” Alexander says, “are all brand products that are purchasable.”
One challenge he had to overcome when pitching the concept to potential investors was the doubt that retail brands would want to join the startup. Nearly 40 took the opportunity for the first launch, however, surpassing the 15-20 the team was hoping for.
Neighborhood Goods aims to create a space that fosters a positive experience where people come together “to tell stories and get closer to the brands,” Alexander says, “and help bridge the divide between the people behind the brands and the consumers that like to shop for them.”
Listen to the full episode to hear how Alexander created the concept for Neighborhood Goods and what to expect from its first location that just opened.