Since 2000, we have provided the research, relationships, and strategies needed to drive new retail developments.

We are a national retail consulting, market research and development firm that combines strategy, technology, and creative expertise to develop and deliver high-impact retail recruitment and development strategies to local governments, chambers of commerce and economic development organizations. Through our unique Retail 360® process, we offer a fully customized system of products and services that better enable communities to maximize their retail development potential.


of Experience


Clients Served
Throughout the U.S.

38 States

We’ve Worked in
38 States


of Clients Hire
Us Multiple Times

Retailers Recruited to Client Communities

…and hundreds more

What Clients Say About Us

Over and over again I heard about The Retail Coach's "service after the sale." This was important to us. A lot of firms can run data and put together fancy reports. What allows The Retail Coach to stand out is their coaching. A tool is useless unless someone 'coaches' you on the best way to utilize it. When you hire The Retail Coach you are not just buying data, you are hiring a coach to help you with your retail development needs.

Dave QuinnVP, Frisco Economic Development Corp.

In my opinion, The Retail Coach’s strategy and assistance netted us over 325,000 square feet of occupied retail development during one of the most significant retail downturns in the last 20 years. Money well spent.

Sam SatterwhiteExecutive Director, Wylie Economic Development Corp.

The location of Sprouts Farmers Market was a direct result of meetings coordinated by The Retail Coach between our community and site selectors at ICSC/Recon in 2012.

Warren UnsickerVP of Economic Development, Broken Arrow Economic Development Corporation

Our Team

C. Kelly Cofer, CCIM

Founder & CEO

C. Kelly Cofer leads The Retail Coach with more than 25 years of experience in all aspects of retail real estate and economic development. Mr. Cofer’s professional background encompasses market research and site selection, advisory and leasing services, and property brokerage and development for leading national and regional retailers and restaurants in more than 150 cities throughout the United States. Mr. Cofer has earned the prestigious Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM) designation from the Chicago-based Commercial Investment Real Estate Institute and attended the Economic Development Institute at the University of Oklahoma. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Texas A&M University in College Station.

Aaron Farmer


With a degree in Marketing from The Mays Business School at Texas A&M University in College Station and an MBA from Texas A&M University – Commerce, Aaron brings to The Retail Coach knowledge of the most current research on retail and marketing trends. Prior to joining The Retail Coach, Aaron was employed in marketing research and retail development where he worked on projects for some of America’s leading retailers and restaurants including FedEx, Kinkos, Sally Beauty Supply, Adidas, Concentra and the National American Association of Subway Franchises (NAASF). Mr. Farmer’s expertise touches each step of a project from the initial trade area determination to the actual recruitment of retailers. Aaron is a sought after speaker for industry organizations throughout the country.

Nancy Dees

Director of Finance

Nancy Dees’ extensive management and accounting experience encompass some of America’s favorite retailers including Kirkland’s. A number cruncher and people person who loves getting lost in data, Nancy is a perfect fit at The Retail Coach where she directs all administrative functions with efficiency and care. Nancy’s previous experience as a retail buyer and store inventory control manager provides helpful insight as she assists in the retailer research performed by The Retail Coach for each project.

Austin Farmer

Project Director

Prior to joining The Retail Coach, Austin founded Catalyst Growth Partners, a strategic marketing firm specializing in supporting high growth companies, and served as Vice President of Global Marketing and Sales for an international tax advisory firm where he led domestic and international marketing initiatives and oversaw international market development.
Austin started his career in marketing and digital strategy at GameStop, the world's largest video game and consumer electronics retailer. Since, he has held leadership positions in the economic development, non-profit, and financial services industries.
A graduate of Texas A&M University, Austin received a bachelors degree in Marketing with a concentration in Entrepreneurial Leadership and was a member of the distinguished Mays Fellows Program.

Charles Parker

Project Director

Charles brings more than five years of experience in the fields of economic research and entrepreneurship to The Retail Coach. Prior to joining The Retail Coach, Charles served as Research Assistant at Mississippi State University. During his time at MSU, he conducted research exploring economic impacts of tourism and outdoor recreation on municipalities. An entrepreneur himself, Charles has a passion for growing businesses. Outside of his time at The Retail Coach, Charles works as a mentor for start-up companies advancing through University-sponsored incubator processes. These experiences allow Charles to understand the needs of our client communities and help leverage their strengths into retail recruitment success. The McKinney, Texas native holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Mississippi State University, where he continued on to earn his Master of Business Administration and Master of Science degrees.

Matthew Lautensack

Director of Research & Development

New York native, Matthew Lautensack, brings a specialization in critical theory and technology integration to The Retail Coach team. A philosopher and self-taught programmer, Matthew is efficient in user experience, digital platform design, e-commerce, automation, digital advertising, GIS, and is a tremendous asset to our staff. During his tenure at The Retail Coach, he has brought efficiency to the operational processes, through automation, streamlining, and systematizing internal workflows. He was also the principal developer on a number of new products and services we are offering today. Prior to joining The Retail Coach, Matthew was the Director of Information Technology at a natural soap company based out of upstate New York.

Kyle Cofer

Project Manager

Kyle, a graduate of the University of Mississippi, joined The Retail Coach one year ago upon graduation. He was literally raised in the family business having various internship responsibilities at The Retail Coach through the years. Most recently, Kyle was able to build upon his retail real estate experience through an internship with The Henry S. Miller Company in Dallas, Texas.
Kyle will be supporting Project Directors with daily responsibilities, data collection, and client communication.

Caroline Hearnsberger

Retail Recruitment Specialist

With a Masters in Public Policy and Administration combined with almost 10 years in upper administration and project management, Caroline brings client oriented expertise to The Retail Coach. As the former experience as Director of International Services at Mississippi State University, she managed various international projects bringing a broader approach to The Retail Coach retail economic development recruitment methods. She loves learning about each new client and tailoring her recruitment and development strategies to fit those unique profiles. In the Recruitment Specialist role with The Retail Coach, Caroline is primarily responsible for spearheading the firm’s retail recruitment nationwide. When not actively sourcing development opportunities for our clients, Caroline stays busy as a mom of two very active little girls with big personalities.

Cary Everitt

Recruitment Specialist

Cary joined The Retail Coach as an addition to the retail recruitment team. He comes from a background of almost 9 years in healthcare and retail management helping him gain exceptional relationship building skills and education in business development strategies. He is currently in the process of obtaining his Texas real estate license in order to expand his knowledge in the field, allowing him to offer the best guidance and assistance to all current and future clients alike. The main focus for Cary at The Retail Coach is to identify and recruit interested restaurants and retailers to client communities contributing to market growth and expansion.

Katie Zuniga

Marketing & Communications Manager

Katie, an Austin native graduated from Concordia University Texas with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication with a concentration in Public Relations. Upon graduation she went on to become the Marketing & Communications Manager for Susan G. Komen Austin. Ever since then, she knew she wanted to do impactful work that would make a difference and directly impact lives in wherever her career took her. Over the years she’s also gained experience in digital media marketing, web design, and web development in the retail industry. At The Retail Coach, she’s responsible for all marketing and communications efforts.