A mobile shipping container that can be rented by brands/SMEs to be used as
1. Pop up store
2. Mini cafe/Food truck
3. Demo space - try out new products ex: Peloton bike
4. Brand activations
5. Events - yoga, meditation, food tasting
Brands can rent the space for a day, week, month.
Aside from renting out the mobile retail unit, we also provide decor/shopfit/point of sale and staffing.
Send me your business plan.
What would your #1 customer be?
How are they solving this problem right now?
At 30,000 feet it seems interesting, especially if you have fully outfitted the container for specific purposes so the Brand can not deal with the logistics.
In the US you may run into several regulatory issues (especially when dealing with food) for anything requiring connection to utilities - although they may seem onerous, they are there for public safety.
Start researching pop up physical stores, promotional events - like the energy drink sector that does these in a motor home or bus, and food truck permitting regulations in your first city to get a feel for the regulatory environment. I also assume this is not something you would launch in the middle of a pandemic if the value proposition has people in close quarters, such as inside a small space.
Location, Location, Location -- Renting someone a shipping container that can be converted into any of the above ideas doesn't, in my mind, fill a specific need. Anyone today can go buy a shipping container and get it delivered for a couple of grand. If that shipping container isn't located in a desirable location what's the point. If you look at locations that are desirable there are existing bricks and mortar competition that allow for pop-up shops in malls and retail areas of cities and towns. Space near high foot traffic areas is highly regulated, in short, you can't drop a shipping container just anywhere.
Now if you want to pivot and become an expert in providing the pop-up shop experience, i.e., have relationships at all of the existing bricks and mortar locations, have the licensing sorted out, have the capability to quickly build-out and clean-up a location, local advertising expertise needed to generate buzz and traffic and have the location expertise to know where can you do what in a specific geography (maybe bricks and mortar, maybe a shipping container, maybe a tent, whatever) then you may have a service that would be desirable. You could have an expertise that is more economical to buy than build internally for a client.
Now I don't know if these firms exist, I don't know if there is sufficient demand and I don't know your capabilities but I can see value there that I do not see in renting a shipping container.
My 2 cents.. respectfully submitted.
The idea is interesting and has the potential to be successful. But the concept, design and right management is crucial for the success.
This already exists, with multiple event marketing & trade show companies offering this exact service. It's mostly for blue-chip brands, as it's expensive to do custom pop-ups design & fabrication with high-quality execution on tight timetables. Also, it's clearly a post-pandemic idea since this whole sector has been walloped with social distancing. I guess the upside is if you want to start an event marketing shop or trade show display company, there are a lot of unemployed excellent people available right now who know all the ins and outs of these types of projects.
I think what would matter is the type of product. What if your square footage can not sustain the price and volume of the product..
Focus on one segment that is not being addressed and interview your potential market. Your market is too large. Sounds like you are trying to be a disruptor, if so, how would your shipping container stand up against the food truck, how would it be licensed for vendors in cities, all questions and hurdles to get out in the market and test the idea, not behind the computer screen.
Just my two cents, because I've lived it.
I do see this as something that could be interesting, though some of the feedback already provided from others is worth considering. My initial thoughts is that if this is for the SMB market, then it would need to be affordable and I wonder if the costs would be aligned. For me to provide a more compelling opinion, it would be helpful to see a visual of what this might look like and a rough idea on cost.
Sounds like an interesting venture, I watched a webinar a couple of days ago with the founder of Sook (https://www.sook.space/) who hire out empty retail units. It seems to be working for them and isn't too much of a push to use a container, though I'm sure there's some considerations for local rules and regulations.