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.

20+

Years
of Experience

650+ 

Clients Served
Throughout the U.S.

38 States

We’ve Worked in
38 States

90%+

of Clients Hire
Us Multiple Times

Retailers Recruited to Client Communities

…and hundreds more

What Clients Say About Us

"The Retail Coach organization has a proven track record of accurately portraying a community, providing the information needed to help prospective retailers see the community. They are well respected among retail chains and retail site locators. They take the time to visit the community- boots on the ground if you will and they will visit with retailers and learn all they can about the community before publishing their work. Another factor in this is the company is constantly seeking out new technology to improve their results- they have the tools and the talent."

Charles L. Smith, CEcDMount Pleasant Economic Development Corporation | Mount Pleasant, TX

"The Retail Coach has truly been the teammate I needed to achieve our goals in the retail and commercial sector. Their always prompt response and ability to use data to support quality development and foster long lasting relationships have made a difference in our connections and community. The Retail Coach staff has been an outstanding extension of our office and our community."

Serra P. HallVice President of Project Development | Industrial Development Authority | Newton County, GA

"I have been working closely with The Retail Coach for more than ten years and they will always be my go-to retail recruitment firm."

Thom LambertExecutive Director | Decatur Economic Development Corporation | Decatur, TX

“The Retail Coach is hands-down one of the best consultant teams of any kind that our team has had the pleasure of working with. Their extensive expertise and nationwide connections with site selectors, developers, and major chains have opened up new doors for the City of Lancaster, allowing us to take our recruitment efforts to the next level and collaborate with brands that hadn’t previously considered our market. They work as an extension of our staff, anticipating needs and freeing up in-house staff time. I can’t recommend the Retail Coach highly enough.”

Chenin DowEconomic Development Manager | Lancaster, CA

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 CCIM designation from the Chicago-based Commercial Investment Real Estate Institute and attended the Economic Development Institute at the University of Oklahoma. He also holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Texas A&M University.

Aaron Farmer

President

Aaron Farmer brings to The Retail Coach knowledge of the most current research on retail and marketing trends. Prior to joining The Retail Coach, Mr. Farmer 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. Mr. Farmer’s expertise touches each step of a project from the initial trade area determination to the actual recruitment of retailers. Mr. Farmer holds a degree in Marketing from The Mays Business School at Texas A&M University and an MBA from Texas A&M University – Commerce.

Nancy Dees

Director of Finance

At The Retail Coach Nancy Dees directs all administrative functions with efficiency and care. She is a number cruncher and a people person who loves getting lost in data. Mrs. Dees extensive management and accounting experience encompass some of America’s favorite retailers such as Kirkland’s. Mrs. Dees 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

Austin Farmer brings experience in leadership in the economic development, non-profit, and financial services industries to The Retail Coach. Mr. Farmer started his career in marketing and digital strategy at GameStop. Following that, he 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. Mr. Farmer is a graduate of Texas A&M University where he received a bachelor's degree in Marketing with a concentration in Entrepreneurial Leadership and was a member of the distinguished Mays Fellows Program.

Charles Parker

Project Director

Charles Parker 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, Mr. Parker 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. 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. 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, Mr. Lautensack was the Director of Information Technology at a natural soap company based out of upstate New York. A philosopher and self-taught programmer, Mr. Lautensack is efficient in user experience, digital platform design, e-commerce, automation, digital advertising and GIS.

Kyle Cofer

Project Manager

Kyle Cofer joined The Retail Coach right after college. He was raised in the family business having various internship responsibilities at The Retail Coach throughout the years. Before joining The Retail Coach, Mr. Cofer built upon his retail real estate experience through an internship with The Henry S. Miller Company in Dallas, Texas. Mr. Cofer now uses his skills to support the Project Directors with daily responsibilities, data collection, and client communication. Mr. Cofer is a proud graduate of the University of Mississippi.

Caroline Harrelson

Retail Recruitment Specialist

Caroline Harrelson brings client oriented expertise to The Retail Coach. Prior to joining The Retail Coach she was the 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. In the Recruitment Specialist role, Mrs. Harrelson is primarily responsible for spearheading the firm’s retail recruitment nationwide. Mrs. Harrelson holds a Masters in Public Policy and Administration combined with almost 10 years in upper administration and project management.

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. The main focus for Mr. Everitt at The Retail Coach is to identify and recruit interested restaurants and retailers to client communities contributing to market growth and expansion. 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.

Katie Zuniga

Marketing & Communications Manager

An Austin, Texas native, Katie Zuniga joined The Retail Coach to build upon the marketing department within the firm and to take ownership of all marketing and communications efforts. Mrs. Zuniga began her career as the Marketing & Communications Manager in the non-profit sector. Over the years she has gained experience and a vast knowledge in event planning, media relations, digital and social media marketing, web design, and web development in the retail industry. Mrs. Zuniga graduated from Concordia University Texas with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication with a concentration in Public Relations.

Aiden Berry

Research Analyst

Aiden Berry joined The Retail Coach as an intern immediately following graduation from Texas A&M University prior to assuming the Research Analyst role. Mr. Berry specializes in data analysis and data visualization. He brings to the team experience in data science research projects in variety of fields. He uses his skills to assist The Retail Coach with daily tasks, research, data collection, visualization and other data related projects. Mr. Berry holds a Bachelor of Science degree in statistics from Texas A&MUniversity and is currently pursuing a Master of Science degree in statistics at Southern Methodist University in Dallas.