Business Boom

Angela-BrooksTucker is undoubtedly one of the fastest-rising business destinations in the Metro Atlanta area.  Each month, the Business Boom will seek to show different examples of how Tucker’s business scene is flourishing. This month's column is written by  Business Outreach Coordinator, Angela Brooks. 

Last month, InTucker was dedicated to telling the stories – past and present – of Tucker’s Northlake area. One of the stories we didn’t get to share in that issue was of one of the original tenants of Northlake Mall: Gilbert Kann of Northlake Stamp & Coin.  

Since the onset of the pandemic, we’ve heard story after story about how online shopping has skyrocketed, often negatively impacting small, local brick and mortar businesses. However, this is not one of those stories. Why? After all these years, Kann credits one thing with his continued success: steadfast customers. The business has experienced a slight uptick because people are staying at home more and discovering or rediscovering hobbies and other creative things to do. 

“Our customers are very loyal,” Kann explained. “They come back, and they bring their friends and generations of their family. I don’t know how many times a day somebody comes in and says “I was here as a child” or “this is where I started my penny collection” or “I bought a package of Pokémon cards, and I got a Charizard card.””

Northlake-Stamp-&-Coin2Stores large and small, chains, and boutiques have come and gone from the mall over the years, but Stamp & Coin has stood the test of time through economic downturns, changes in management companies, and now COVID-19. 

Kann’s loyal customers also create what’s called a niche market that the big box stores can rarely replicate. Stores like Stamp & Coin can’t compete with their mass production and distribution, but their winning strategy is to offer products that are unique or one of a kind or hard to find items and a level of personal service that the big boxes cannot. 

“It’s all about the experience that we create for each customer,” Kann explained at the beginning of our conversation and repeated many times all throughout the interview. “You pretty much know that the person has some type of interest in history or collecting when they come in the store, so it’s not about selling them something. Whether it’s for themselves or perhaps a gift, they more than likely have some level of appreciation of what the store has to offer.”

And, speaking of offerings, Stamp & Coin has tens of thousands of pieces of inventory, and that’s just what they’re able to display. Coins and paper money from around the world, postage stamps, games, and cards; you name it, they have it. And on the off chance they don’t have it, they’re happy to research and find it for the customer.  

“We can spend hours and hours doing research offline to fulfill a customer request,” Kann said. “Not only are we serving our customer, but we also often gain knowledge that we can then pass along to others who come in the store.”

When you enter Stamp & Coin, the staff has a way of seemingly transporting you back in time through the stories they can tell and the artifacts they can show. 

“It’s not about if you buy something or not,” said Kann. “It’s about the experience we can create for that person or that family. Not only are you telling a story, but you’re also giving them something that they can look at and touch to help appreciate the history even more.” 

Kann was still in school when his parents opened Stamp & Coin and he now says he’s seeing things come full circle. 

Northlake-Stamp-&-Coin“Now I get to see parents bring their children in after they were here as a child. They come back with their children or grandchildren, and they want to show them how excited they were about the things they got here and enjoyed and try to make them interested as well.” 

In this digital age of endless scrolling on social media platforms, it’s refreshing to know that there’s still a market for this ode to historical preservation and that there’s another generation of young people who are still being exposed to this leisure pastime that requires little to no technology to enjoy it. That’s not to say the store hasn’t kept pace with modern times, though. In addition to the brick and mortar, they have a website, and they even sell through Amazon and Walmart. 

“People from across the country, and even around the world, who have bought something on Amazon or bought something through our website have made it a point to come into the store while visiting Atlanta,” Kann explained. And, while he could use a bit more space to display his wares, “as long as the mall is here, we don’t see ourselves going anywhere.”

Northlake Stamp & Coin is located inside of Northlake Mall on the second level. Despite the construction activity around it, the store is open seven days a week.

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