Interior designer Kerrie Kelly is expanding her business into a second location in midtown Sacramento that will allow designers and retail customers to see the furnishings, finishes and hardware sold under her 42nd Street brand.
Kelly, of course, launched her design studio in East Sacramento in 1995. Her business units currently occupy 1,800 square feet at 5704 Elvas Ave. By June 1, she plans to softly open a 1,000-square-foot flagship store at 1221 19th St. between Mulvaney’s B&L and Devine Gelateria.
Besides her design services and furnishings unit, Kelly also runs a brand marketing company, Loft Media Group, that works with companies in the interior design and home-goods space to improve their social media engagement. Employees of Loft Media will join the 42nd Street team at the new location in midtown Sacramento’s Handle District.
“Two years ago, when I came aboard, there were four or five employees, and we now have 10,” said Taylor Toledo, Loft’s director of marketing. “It was becoming a tight squeeze at the Elvas office.”
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At Loft, Toledo works with clients such as Dallas’ Coyote Outdoor Living to develop a social media strategy. Then she develops the content and schedules it for posting at the customer’s Twitter, Facebook or other social media accounts.
“We share the strategy with them at the beginning of the month,” Toledo said. “We go through it and make sure it aligns with their goals. We take it from there. Then we report back at the end of the month and show them, ‘This is where you wanted to be in growth and engagement.’ We pretty much manage the entire thing, but we can also help with auditing brands, telling you where you can improve and showing you what’s not working.”
Kelly founded 42nd Street Design a year ago because she was unable to find custom furniture and decor merchandise that customers wanted. The brand now offers furniture, lighting, rugs. artwork and home decor, and the midtown location will provide a space for interior designers and clients to review options.
Kerrie’s business has grown by word of mouth, Toledo said, but the designer also serves as a national spokeswoman on interior design for Zillow and she is a subject matter expert for Home Depot. Until now her 42nd Street designs have sold only online. Her team designs the furniture line, but they work with industry partners on the other products.
Riskalyze expands: Financial-tech startup Riskalyze will double the office space that it is leasing in Auburn as the company prepares for expansion of its product, engineering, support and coaching teams.
In a January Inside Business column, Aaron Klein, the president of the financial-software startup, said he was looking at additional space. He’s found it just a four-minute drive away from the company’s headquarters at 373 Elm St. The new space will be at 470 Nevada St., right near the Regal Cinemas Auburn 10 theater.
Klein has said the company would be making roughly 100 new hires this year. The company had 121 employees in January 2017, 90 in January 2016 and 40 in January 2015.
While some of the new hires will work in Auburn, others will be based at Riskalyze’s office in Atlanta. The company also is expanding its brick-and-mortar presence in that city, moving into 16,000 square feet in the midtown Bank of America Plaza.
The company’s signature product, Riskalyze, helps financial advisers assess their clients’ tolerance for investment risk by determining their so-called risk number, a figure from 1 to 100. The most aggressive investors have higher risk numbers, while conservative investors come in lower.
Employees have named conference rooms in its offices after Wall Street-themed movies, but Matt Fritsch, Riskalyze’s director of marketing channels, said Tuesday that the growth is posing a problem: “We’re kind of running out of movies, to be honest.”
In an interview in December, Klein told me that he and the the company’s two other co-founders, Mike McDaniel and Matt Pistone, often have talked about how they are in the early stages of building a 100-year company.
“We’re getting close to the end of year 6, so we have 94 years to go,” he said. “It’s very clear to us at this point that less than 10 percent of our opportunity is behind us and much more is still in front of us.”
Right now, Riskalyze’s leaders have honed in on being an independent partner for financial advisers, but that doesn’t mean they won’t ever look at selling the company. That might be the option that makes the most sense for employees in future, Klein said.