Twin Cities retail experts launch Urban Rooster, where shoppers can buy products from local small businesses.
Former Target executives Chris Walton and Anne Mezzenga have gone from working on big-box stores to thinking about how they can better market products made by small local retailers.
In time for the holiday rush and Small Business Saturday, the pair has launched web portal, UrbanRoostershop.com, to help consumers shop online from Twin Cities small retailers. Walton and Mezzenga hope to spread the network to other Midwestern metros.
“People are concerned about shopping safely. I think people are also concerned about their small businesses, how do they continue to support them, especially in Minneapolis given everything that has gone on over the summer,” Walton said. “We wanted to create something for them in that vein using our background in technology and retail.”
Urban Rooster recently featured about a dozen Twin Cities shops including sock and apparel company Hippy Feet, Arway bags and accessories and Muddy Mouth Cards. Shoppers can also browse products recommended by Twin Cities influencers such as restaurateur Justin Sutherland.
Urban Rooster charges the retailer a small percentage of each sale to cover the maintenance costs of the site. The majority of money from the fee over the holiday season is being donated to nonprofit Best Christmas Ever to help provide holiday experiences to families going through economic difficulties, Mezzenga said.
“Going forward, there’s a possibility that that will change, but as of right now, we’re focused on really just giving back to our community,” she said.Star Tribune