As Kimco’s Westlake Shopping Center in Daly City, California continues to welcome new tenants, we always make sure that our tenant mix is varied to offer a wide range of services to our shoppers. Non-retail companies are part of that mix, with the recent addition of Poplar Global Wealth Management (PGWM) being a perfect example. A traditional wealth management and financial planning practice, PGWM services businesses, executives, and families, primarily focusing on investing in individual stocks. We spoke with Darrell Young, an Investment Adviser Representative at PGWM about the company, his experience thus far at Westlake Center, and his thoughts on the benefits of moving his office to a retail center.

Darrell Young, Investment Adviser Representative at Poplar Global Wealth Management

Tell us about Poplar Global Wealth Management. Darrell Young: We’re a traditional wealth management and financial planning practice. We mainly focus on investing in individual stocks, which we believe differentiates us from our peers, who most often work on either mutual funds or exchange-traded funds. We assist people with personal financial planning and manage their investment assets. The company has been in existence for a little over four years, and our principal previously worked at two warehouses. I transitioned from doing the same type of work at UBS and Merrill Lynch. When I left Merrill Lynch I decided that I would better be able to serve my clients in a more independent environment, working for myself rather than a large corporation.

Who is your target customer? Young: We work with business owners, corporate executives, and affluent families. We’re located in the San Francisco Bay Area, which is fairly affluent compared to the rest of the nation. Our client roster currently includes about 60 or 70 families.

How long have you been at Westlake Center? Young: Our lease began on May 1. We looked at the Westlake Center a couple years ago, but unfortunately space was not available at that time.

What attracted you to locate your office at Westlake Center? Young: I like the fact that it is primarily a retail shopping center with some tucked away corporate office space. I also like the stores in the center and appreciate that it’s close to home. We’re happy with the free parking and the wide variety of retailers and restaurants, as well as the easy access to public transportation.

What are the benefits of having your office in a retail center? Young: Clients can visit me at my office and get errands done all in one location. For example, a client can stop by the office, get coffee, run to the pharmacy, do some grocery shopping, go to the bank, buy clothing, etc. Convenience is a big issue for people, and this allows them to maximize their time.

How do you promote your services? Young: Our services are mainly spread through word of mouth referrals. We prefer face-to-face marketing. I look at events as networking opportunities. We haven’t participated in Westlake’s center-wide events yet, because we’ve only been a tenant for a short time, but we look forward to participating in future events.

Anything else you’d like to add? Young: I’m excited to be at Westlake Center, especially after having initially looked at the property two years ago. I’m also excited to meet my new neighbors. The people that I’ve met and the property manager have been great. I’m really looking forward to attending the center’s events.

On a personal note, as a finance professional, I’m concerned that many traditional retailers are under pressure from the growth of online buying. I believe that many enclosed shopping malls will have to adapt quickly in order to keep up. I think that Kimco’s concentration on strip malls and neighborhood community shopping centers, as well as their mixed tenant base, will allow them to continue to prosper. I’ve noticed a couple of businesses similar to mine in Westlake Center, which I believe is mutually beneficial.

This has been an installment of StoreFront, an interview series with leaders of successful retail businesses. For more interviews, visit the StoreFront page. To learn how you can be featured, email us. We’d love to hear from you.