HiO brings pop-up vibe to new store concept
If shoppers are looking for something they’ve never seen before in the brands they buy, then Brooklyn’s new HiO might have what they’re looking for. The new retailer brings together eight brands from overseas (and one U.S.-based brand), some of which have never appeared in the U.S. until now.
HiO launched in downtown Brooklyn toward the end of the summer and, as reported on CNBC, comes at a time when foreign brands still see the U.S. as the biggest potential market for growth, but are skittish about taking big steps given the wave of store closures seen here. Co-founder Sever Garcia pointed to similar retail concepts abroad that ease the move of foreign brands into new markets and said consumers are “hungry for newness.” The brands found in HiO vary in category; customer can find women’s accessories, embroidered bags, travel items, sunglasses, candles and oil diffusers, makeup and notebooks.
The concept bears some similarity to other recent headline-making retail concepts, which have provided space for multiple brands — either permanent or rotating — around a particular theme.
Earlier this year in NYC, for instance, a pop-up retailer called Consortium launched a concept dedicated to customizable health and beauty products.
Bigger retailers have been exploring the model, as well. Earlier this year, Macy’s launched its pop-up concept, The Market @ Macy’s, and began leveraging b8ta, a platform that allows otherwise online-only brands to find a place in-store on Macy’s shelves.
And the Roosevelt Field shopping mall in Long Island has had success with its Edit @ Roosevelt Field pop-up space, dedicated mostly to a rotating lineup of online-only brands.
In fact, the HiO concept had run previously as a part of the popular Edit @ Roosevelt Field pop-up space according to CNBC. The creators of HiO envision the concept as filling empty retail real estate elsewhere in the U.S. They did not indicate if the same overseas brands now in the Brooklyn location would appear on the shelves of other HiO stores or if each proposed location would have its own assortment.
- 9 brands come together under one roof in Brooklyn to test new retail shop – CNBC
- Consortium is made to order for people who want customized brands – RetailWire
- Macy’s takes stake in retail-as-a-service tech firm – RetailWire
- A mall carves out pop-up space for online brands – RetailWire
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Do you agree that American consumers are so “hungry for newness” that they’ll frequent stores such as HiO? Do you think this or similar concepts will work outside of New York?