By Samantha Errico
Showfields, which opened its flagship store in New York City's glam NoHo neighborhood in December, is an immersive department store, but Co-Founder Tal Zvi Nathanel says he also sees it as a platform for digitally-native brands.
The store acts as an "out-of-the-box" brick-and-mortar solution for brands that may not be familiar with the day-to-day business of running a store. Nathanel told Cheddar on Friday that Showfields will tailor that solution for the needs of each brand ーletting them choose things like the size of their space, the length of their stay, and staffing requirements.
"We look at ourselves as a platform and it's really on you, the brand, to decide how you want to go about it," he said.
"If we can make the process of opening a physical store as easy as opening a website, we can actually make them retail-accessible and solve the consumer problem of discovery," Nathanel said.
Showfields represents a high-end segment of a burgeoning trend in brick-and-mortar retail. Startups like Brand Box and bt8a aim to bring the cache of tech brands and direct-to-consumer start-ups to staid shopping centers and malls. For those companies, which are typically hamstrung with fulfilling orders, it's a marketing opportunity to meet consumers on the street, rather than just the screens.
Chief Brand officer Katie Hunt told Cheddar Friday that the store has one focus in mind: discovery.
Showfields is bringing the digital experience back to a physical location. Each floor of the four-story brick-and-mortar is dedicated to a different vertical. They have teamed up with brands such as quip, by Chloe, CITYROW, GRAVITY, and frank body.
"It's about finding brands that are all talking to the same customer," Hunt said. The WeWork-inspired space is bringing different digital brands to life.
New York City may be Showfields' first location, but it won't be its last.
"Our vision is to see one or two Showfields in every major city around the world," Nathanel said.
For full interview click here.