Finding New Lives for Old Junk
How Beeline Moving Grew to Embrace Currents
Compiled by Jodi La Marco
Livelihood spoke with Brendan Mullally, owner of Beeline Moving and Hauling to chat about his business and the future of local currency.
Tell us how your business got its start.
I was homeless and drunk in March of 2010. I got out of a rehab homeless shelter and I didn’t have anything. I started doing junk removal jobs, and virtually every job was for perfectly usable furniture that I had to smash up and take to the landfill. I thought that was a shame, so I figured out a way to form a relationship with charities. I wanted to give my clients an incentive to hire me because it was a really competitive business. Anyone with half a brain and a pickup truck can do a junk removal job. I worked with Hudson River Housing and they offered me a situation so that if you happen to hire me for a junk removal job and there’s furniture that I can salvage, I’ll give you a donation receipt. That was how Junk For Charity got its start. When I got a box truck I realized I could move people, so I started doing that. Mullally Hauling Service eventually became Beeline Moving and Hauling, LLC. The whole thing works together because people who are moving often have stuff that they don’t want or need, so they hire us to haul that and then I can give them a donation receipt.
How do you support the local economy?
I believe that investing in workers is what sets us apart from the rest. Beeline has had a profit-sharing model since 2014, and will continue to in the future. Sharing profits is the way to be. BeeLine is expanding, so we’re currently looking at the best ways to implement an employee-owned model.
What are your plans for the future?
My company’s about to go global. We’ve won the Angie’s List Super Service Award for the eighth year in a row. Turning Junk for Charity into a 501(c)3 “free store” is also on the horizon and I’m also launching a website in March called FeedXchange.com. It’s a business-social marketplace, all about promotion of alternative forms of paying for things such as bartering, cryptocurrencies, etc. My main goal is to help get this global marketplace where people—especially in impoverished and third-world countries—get their products and services out into the world. The website will use a collaborative marketing technique where we can actually make ads and place them in your home-base zip code, and then from there, you can create as many ads as you want and put them in a certain radius of your home base. You can also have temporary ads that you put in any zip code around the world. It’s a place for likeminded people from around the world to find each other in a really unique way, and then help market each other’s stuff. You can meet people and offer to do an ad exchange and market each other’s stuff by dropping ads on your Facebook or other social media platforms. My goal is for FeedXchange.com to help spawn other local economies. I’ll accept Currents for membership, and I’m hoping that my website will actually gain a lot of publicity for the Current.
Why are you so passionate about local currencies?
The thing that I love about this is that I love community. What the Current does—or what any local currency does—is it’s another excuse to bring the community together. We have each other’s back. I love the sense of community that it has the potential to offer, especially with people who are making crafts, and artists. That’s a really cool thing to trade in. I also don’t have much faith in the current economic structure, in the global economy. So, if things do fall apart, I like the idea of having money in another venue that can be useful.