Polaris welcomes Jamaican restaurant, candy shop and shoe retailer as new tenants
- May 6, 2022
Black Enterprise Editors (Jan. 28, 2022) - PopCom’s founder and CEO, Dawn Dickson-Akpoghene, is set to visit seven cities across the U.S. from January through March 2022 to launch the company’s latest PopShop Local installments.
PopCom, a company that has largely leaned on its community to support its push forward, is also inviting its crowdfunding investors and followers to join Dawn for an in-person PopCom Meet & Greet at the roadshow locations to celebrate the local impact of its PopShops.
So, what are PopShops? They are an innovative hybrid between e-commerce and local brick-and-mortar storefronts. PopShops not only give customers the option to purchase trusted local goods through an automated system but also offer e-commerce brands discoverability in local markets with real-time metrics, such as measuring consumer wants. Dubbed the “iPhone of vending machines”, PopShops utilize facial recognition to help retailers capture demographic information, machine learning to help deliver targeted content, and blockchain technology to enable identity verification and the sale of regulated products.
The roadshow kicked off on Jan. 14 with PopShop Local Columbus at Polaris Mall, which currently carries The Brow Dr. and Black Owned, both of which have Ohio-based founders. On the East Coast, from Jan. 16-18, PopCom’s latest features was showcased in New York City at the NRF 2022: Retail’s Big Show, an annual expo that brings together industry visionaries to tackle retail’s biggest topics and to showcase what’s next.
Following the NYC exhibition, Dawn will continue the PopShop Local roadshow series and investor meetups at the following locations: Concord Mills Mall in Concord, NC, on Jan. 21; Stonebriar Mall in Frisco, TX, on Feb. 4; The Beverly Center in Beverly Hills, CA, on Feb. 11; Metreon Mall in San Francisco, CA, on Feb. 15; Honolulu, HI, on Feb.25; Las Vegas, NV, on Mar. 4. If you are a part of PopCom’s crowdfunding investors or general support community, RSVP to attend the PopCom Meet & Greet in a city near you.
Within the last three months, the PopShop Local Program has debuted six machines offering a variety of local goods that were originally limited to online shopping sites. For instance, SoulFlower’s 100% pure natural bath products are now carried at the PopShop Local Los Angeles at The Beverly Center. In October of 2021, Brew and Feed’s launched its creative tea flavors and spice blends at the PopShop Local Concord at Concord Mills Mall.
“We are excited about the energy and innovation that PopCom has in their go-to-market strategy,” said Brew and Feed’s founder Robert Moreland, “as well as the potential for further innovation their software can bring with integration with other platforms.”
In November of 2021, Teas with Meaning launched their organic tea at PopShop Local San Francisco at the Metreon. Each month, the company will offer new tea boxes, featuring two small loose leaf teas, biodegradable brew bags, and a wooden teaspoon.
“With this PopShop, I hope to accomplish increased brand awareness and sales for Teas with Meaning, additional insight for our market research, and to see PopCom continue to blossom for small businesses,” said Kamilah Mitchell, founder of Teas with Meaning.
A second PopShop Local Columbus, located at the Fairfield Inn Hotel, opened earlier this month, featuring Ohio-based brand Flat Out of Heels.