We had the good fortune of connecting with Sergio Bindel and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Sergio, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
Let’s set the scene – its March of 2020, and like many of us, I was furloughed from my job due to the pandemic. Having recently graduated from college with my Bachelor’s Degree in marketing, I had been working as a marketing consultant for a small medical group in Orange County with less than a year of experience under my belt. Throughout college, I worked in the hospitality and events industries waiting tables and event coordinating for the LA Food & Wine and Pebble Beach Food & Wine. With restaurants closing their doors and events no longer being permitted, I was unemployed and felt completely lost in a world of uncertainty.

Flash forward to June of 2021 – with the pandemic still in full force, so many local businesses were forced to close their doors for good. Costs to keep brick and mortar retail spaces open in California continued to reach unprecedented highs and small businesses were hit the hardest.
As for me, I had been freelancing as a marketing consultant for local medical practices coordinating dental and dermatology events at apartment amenity spaces conveniently bringing medical services to clients living in luxury communities. Being able to walk right downstairs and get your teeth cleaned or meet with your dermatologist quickly became a hit, especially with social distancing becoming a way of life. My roommate, May, and I had an idea to not only bring the community together during these challenging times but to also help small businesses generate much needed income and grow their businesses.

What should our readers know about your business?
We started The Pop-Up Shoppes with the mission to help local small businesses grow here in Orange County. We began by assembling an eclectic mix of local small business vendors via Instagram. From hand poured candles to gourmet pickles and relish, our constantly growing team of small businesses was ready to get back into the work force each offering their own unique products and services. We began hosting markets in outdoor spaces at luxury apartment communities and corporate campuses making shopping local safe, convenient and fun. Each event features live music and performances, photobooths, raffle prizes and even a full bar service with craft cocktails making The Pop-Up Shoppes not just a small business market, but an elevated pop-up event celebrating and showcasing our local creators and makers. What is unique about The Pop-Up Shoppes is that we showcase a diverse selection of exceptional local chefs that feature signature dishes from all around the world. We love creating events that highlight the colorful cultures within our community.

Today, we can proudly say that we have collaborated with more than 300 women owned, black owned, Latinx owned, LGBTQ+ owned local small businesses here in Orange County.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
First things first, brunch! We’re going to either Urth Cafe or Bosscat at The Orange Circle for some good food and good vibes. The Orange Circle has a charming old town feel with fun antique shops and my favorite plant shop, The Potting Shed. Next, were headed to the beach. We’re taking the top off the Jeep and driving down PCH to Thousand Step Beach in Laguna Beach to enjoy the always sunny southern California weather and to catch the sunset. Last, we’re heading to the iconic Downtown Disney for some dinner and drinks. Nothing says OC like Disneyland so it’s worth a quick evening trip.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
I’d like to recognize my grandmother, Vicki. She has been a constant stream of support in my life and has followed me through the ups and downs of this story. I love you!

Instagram: @thepopupshoppes

Image Credits
@_joshmejia @jeromychan

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