Whether in Detroit or New York City, commercial property managers and owners are in the process of recalibrating their operations due to the unforeseen inflection point of COVID-19, shifting many human activities to the home and reducing foot traffic at stores, offices, and restaurants to a light trickle. Many of their retail tenants are, meanwhile, kicking their feet in an attempt to financially remain afloat.

This time of both uncertainty and hardship has caused two Cass Tech alumni and Detroit Homecoming attendees, Michelle Varian and Jay Norris, to put on their innovation caps, offering both tenant and property management companies their Guesst.co platform as a means of helping retailers to operate in an economy that may be subject to more frequent physical-distancing disruptions.

As mentioned in both the Wall Street Journal and Real Estate Weekly, Guesst.co provides tenants a way of reducing their base rent for the remainder of a lease, while providing landlords with a percentage of “gross sales in addition to extending an existing lease.”

“We built Guesst software to create a more equitable and sustainable eco-system to support small businesses, ie: the restaurant, retail, and design communities. As the pandemic has thrown even more uncertainty on the future of retail, Guesst could not be more relevant,” argues Varian. “The fact that our platform provides tools, such as percentage rent agreement management, we help to minimize risk for brands, retailers, and landlords to create true partnerships.”