Neighborhood Goods has secured a seed round of $5.7 million to create its vision of the department store of the future.
The round was led by Forerunner Ventures. Also participating in the round were Maveron, CAA Ventures, Global Founders Capital and other venture capital firms, as well an individual investors such as Michael Dubin of the Dollar Shave Club.
Kirsten Green, founder and managing partner of Forerunner Ventures, said, “Community and emotional connection are a big part of what drives consumer spending….The delicate balance of both experience and discovery is reshaping the retail industry as shoppers crave brands that are unique and worth getting excited over.”
Cofounded by Matt Alexander and Mark Masinter, the duo expects to open the first location of their retail concept this fall in Plano, Tex., in a 13,000-square-foot store that would house 15 brands on a revolving basis.
Alexander said, “Mark and I saw an opportunity to create something more vibrant and exciting, a vessel through which the next wave of digitally native brands could bridge the divide into physical retail, [where] established brands could create memorable experiences and independent brands could introduce themselves to a wide audience.”
The ceo said that while retail isn’t dead, the problem with traditional retail is that is has become “stagnant,” and the Neighborhood Goods concept gives consumers a memorable experience, while at the same time an opportunity to discover new brands and products.
The retail space is expected to have its own bar, restaurant, social spaces and event programming, as well as speaker series. The layout is planned to allow brands to target customers through activations in the physical and digital landscapes.