An idea rooted from the past…
The traditional American model of retail has always seemed a bit backwards to me. Think about it: developers build shopping centers where ever they want, bring retailers in and force them to sign 10-15 year lease commitments, and make customers come to them.
It may seem particularly odd to me because I experienced something completely different in my early years. Before I was adopted and came to the U.S., I lived in Korea, where the norm was street vendors – a completely mobile shopping experience. If you didn’t see a vendor you wanted, you just had to wait for them to come back around.
Sometimes you just need to fly…
In the summer of 2017, as I was flying to Duluth, Minnesota,, I started to put pen to paper on what Flexetail could look like. Once I landed,I had the base of what Flexetail would look like. Then, I had several hours to myself running the Duluth Marathon to think through the things I needed to do once I got back to Boston to make this happen.
Start small, scale fast
I’ve been thinking about the need for truly well-designed and efficient retail for a long time, but it was on a flight to run a marathon in Duluth, Minnesota where the idea really began to take form. By the end of the flight my notebook was filled with notes and sketches, and by the time I finished the marathon, I had worked out many of the details.
Think even bigger.
Back in Boston, I began working with an architect who was excited about the tiny house movement and a welder who was willing to take some risks – and the design and framework for our first unit was born. We debuted Flexetail in June of 2018 at PVD Fest in Providence with Granny Squibb’s Iced Tea and hit the ground running from there.