In 2016, Scott Bailey was the Managing Director of MassChallenge’s flagship program in Boston. Kevin and Jack Saba, two entrepreneurs with careers spanning business, law, and politics, and venture capital, respectively, teamed up with Scott to tackle an issue they were all passionate about: high-quality, flexible-term affordable housing in major urban centers. The team had watched hard-working entrepreneurs, teachers, nurses, young people, and so many others across the country struggle to find housing in the cities they wanted to be in as they established their careers and paid off their student debt.
And, so, Bequall was born, a suite of rapidly deployable, flexible, and affordable housing solutions that provide tools for developers and landowners. Bequall committed to bringing its first unit to market at under $99,000, incentivizing the production of more affordable housing developments. In the years since 2016, Scott and Kevin have worked tirelessly to iterate on their initial micro-loft designs (inspiring the BePod), solidify manufacturing, and construct a prototype of their BePod micro-housing unit. Then, COVID-19 hit, and the need for affordable housing solutions became much more immediate and widespread.
Mobilizing Fleets for Pandemic Relief
City and state governments across the country have reached out to Bequall to provide a more sustainable housing relief option that can be used to support the needs of affordable housing production, front line healthcare workers, and those requiring isolation. Their units can provide a place that feels like home as they battle through this trying time. Scott, Kevin, and Jack, as a founding team, have stepped up their supply chain, estimating they will be able to deliver 10,000 BePods over the next 3 months, as needed, to meet the demands of regions across the country.
“We’ve even created a second unit called an iso-pod,” Kevin reported. “In that unit, there is a 49-inch door to accommodate gurneys. You walk into a wide-open space and there is a full handicap bathroom and an additional sink for the care workers to use.”
These units can be built at an incredibly rapid pace and, because the home is built into the transportation, it can be moved at a moment’s notice. Once a city is post-surge, they can be rolled out to the next city or the wheels can be taken off and the unit can be transitioned to a permanent solution within the city to accelerate housing production.
The beauty of Bequall lies in the flexibility of its units. BePods that are currently being used for pandemic relief can be easily adapted to affordable housing, accessory dwelling units, where permitted, or even temporary hotels, once the disaster has passed.
Like-Minded and Mission-Driven
Neoscape became involved with Bequall in 2019 when President Rob MacLeod crossed paths with Scott at a networking event in the building. The two got to talking, and Bequall soon came up in conversation. Having a personal interest in efficient-living and inspired by Bequall’s mission-driven business, Rob invited Scott and Kevin into the office to discuss the project.
“Their passion for the project is somewhat infectious. When you hear how much they believe in what they’re doing, you really come to believe in it,” Rob expressed.
From that day on, Neoscape has been a key player on Bequall’s dream team, working alongside CBT and Gulfstream to help Scott, Kevin, and Jack grow their burgeoning startup.
“We are proud to be a part of a team that is committed to building high-quality homes that can address a range of needs across the country. The team is innovative, mission-driven, and aligned with our organization’s values,” recalled Phil Sarvari, President, Gulfstream.
“It’s always great to work with creative people who take what you’re trying to do and bring it to the next level,” added David Nagahiro, Principal, CBT.
Our partnership with Bequall is truly a confluence of Neoscape’s core strengths as a company, applying our marketing and real estate expertise to a project that perfectly aligns with Neoscape culture and the kind of work our employees are passionate about.
This passion and expertise have allowed us to bring a new perspective to the project and challenge the team to look at Bequall in ways they haven’t before, all along maintaining a collaborative approach and establishing a foundation of trust that has allowed us to work together fluidly and nimbly, a necessity when working with any startup.
“We can’t say enough about Neoscape, both the company and the people. Neoscape was able to convey the passion, drive, and commitment as part of our mission and what we’re trying to do, which is really giving people a place they can embrace,” Kevin concluded.