Renting a retail shop on a long-term contract is expensive and is becoming unattractive. Founded in 2014, POP UP SHOPS developed an online platform that enables tenants to easily and quickly find and book the right retail or promotional space. Landlords of retail space and shopping centre managers can advertise and rent out their spaces or receive non-binding inquiries with just a few clicks. Contract and payments are handled online. The platform is active in Switzerland with customers such as Migros, the Swiss Post, CBRE, Wincasa and SPG Intercity, and abroad in Germany, the UK and the USA. Currently, several thousand spaces are listed worldwide and the number is growing rapidly.
The closing of the seed round will facilitate the further development of the platform, expansion catering for the growing demand from landlords and brands. Participants in the round are 21Celsius Ventures, investors from Swiss ICT Investor Club (SICTIC) and several Business Angels including Heinz M. Schwyter, a proptech expert and former CEO of Homegate. The company raised a six-digit amount.
"Retail and the usage of retail space is changing. COVID-19 is further accelerating this trend. The demand for pop-up and promotional spaces is constantly growing as brands are looking for shorter and more flexible leases for their retail shops and live marketing measures. For many retail properties shell leases over 10, 5 or even 3 years is no longer a viable business model. Changing from long-term to short-term and more flexible leases offers landlords the chance to increase the profitability of their properties, but it requires very efficient property marketing and management. With POP UP SHOPS we offer the perfect solution for that", Chalid El Ashker, Founder & Managing Director POP UP SHOPS said.
"The market for commercial real estate and especially retail properties is in a state of upheaval. POP UP SHOPS is pursuing a clear, strongly technology-driven strategy and has created an innovative platform that can optimally address the existing and future market potential. I am pleased to support the POP UP SHOPS team as investor and advisor in its further expansion", said Heinz M. Schwyter, Proptech-Expert and former CEO of Homegate.
Together with the cities of Zurich and St. Gallen and the Eastern Switzerland University of Applied Sciences, POP UP SHOPS is part of the Innosuisse-funded project “Pop-up City”. In 2019, the start-up was awarded as one of the most innovative Proptech companies of the year at the German Proptech Pitch event.