Part I: The Journey to Become a Workforce Housing Leader
October 19, 2021
In Part I of this two-part series, Youmna Assad interviews Neveo Mosser, the CEO of Mosser Companies and Co-Founder and Chairman of the company’s private equity business, Mosser Capital and Jim Farris, the CEO of Mosser Capital. Neveo shares about his journey to become the CEO of Mosser and his unique perspective as an investor, owner/operator, and leader in the San Francisco business community who is passionate about workforce and affordable housing.
I'm Neveo Mosser. I'm the CEO of our family owned business which is Mosser Companies. We've been around for over five decades. I've been the CEO since the year 2000. I've been employed now for over 37 years with the family. We've gone ahead and we operate over 3,500 multi-family residential units in the state of California. Also inclusive of 100 commercial and ground floor retail spaces as well.
YA: Neveo, the Mosser Company has a deep history. Can you please talk about the deep roots of the business started in the 50s by your father, Charles Mosser?
NM: Yes. The business was started off initially by my father back in the late 50s. At that time, Concentric to leave San Francisco was primarily at that time more of a real estate brokerage company. Then we transitioned into operations. I would say that we've, for several decades, probably going back almost four decades have been a vertically integrated investor operator of properties. My father had a saying that 'the eye of the owner fattens the cow' and that was that we would always go ahead and operate and own properties and areas that we're close by or where weird but to go ahead and to spend a great deal of time working on. Over the years we've specialized in what we call workforce housing or which is naturally affordable housing throughout California.
We've always tried to go ahead and to work side by side with our clients or what some people just refer to as tenants. As members of our communities and how we can go ahead and work together to improve not only the properties from a structural basis but also from an operational basis as well as how we can improve the communities in which we work.
JF: Neveo I think it's also important to note that part of this deep history that you mentioned of investing and operating in the workforce housing business was an important part of what attracted me to develop Mosser capital with you. The ability for us as a group just to work alongside, along establish entities such as Mosser that had such deep roots in the community is definitely an advantage for us as we go forward.
YA:That's really great. We know you as a leader in the San Francisco business community including being a 20 year member of the San Francisco residential rent board. Can you share your perspective as an executive and person of color in the industry in California's gateway cities, in the investment community, and now personally, with what it feels like our country higher commitment to equity?
NM: Great question. Our company is a primarily minority and woman owned business and has been that way for over a decade now. It's always been important for us, especially within the family, is that we are active in our communities active both not only from a business standpoint but also from a civic and social impact standpoint point. We've, or at least for myself, I thought that it would be beneficial not only to myself but also for the city that I call home. Which at time was San Francisco was that I become a more active and I thought a great place of fully understanding our impact on our communities and helping promote the rules and regulations of rent stabilization in the bay area was by serving on the Sanco residential rent board commission.
I served on that for definitely for over 22 years approximately 24 years. But has also been active in many other civic and social organizations. That's been participating on the board of directors for the Tenderloin Y M C A or the new Tenderloin Museum or the African-American Cultural Center. It's been important for us as though a way of going ahead and keeping our fingers on what's going on in our communities and how we go ahead and to improve the environment across that spectrum. I kind of find that talking about that DEI and it's never really been a critical thing for us because we are minorities and it's for us, it's actually, this is what we've been doing since our existence started by my father and or myself. These are things that while they're coming to the forefront to many people for the first time over the last five to 10 years this is how we've operated for at least the last 40 Years.
YA:I know you'll be talking to us more about DEI in our upcoming DEI webinar on October 20th. I'm looking forward to hear more from you about that.
NM: Yes. I looking forward to that.
YA: As a leader in the workforce housing, you must have properties and some interesting and transitional neighborhoods. Can you tell us about your resident populations and the communities you work in?
NM: Being in California when being a leader in specializing in urban workforce housing whether that's in San Francisco or Oakland or in Los Angeles county. Our resident populations are very very diverse. The communities that we work in range from lower income to high income communities. I think that for us it's why we look at specializing in the areas that might be transitional is how we go ahead and we work with our existing resident populations to go ahead and improve upon those areas. We, I would say our company with that has over 320 full-time employees throughout the state of California is very diverse and that our companies tends to reflect the diversity other, and the rich cultural attributes of the communities that we work in.
YA: That's great. I had the opportunity to visit some of your properties and I can definitely speak to that about the quality relocation and also definitely the operation side and the employees that you have on board. Can you talk about gentrification and how you view it as both an investor and owner operator? And how do you intend to stay on course providing affordable and workforce housing?
NM:Gentrification has always been a bad word in my family and for many people as well. We look at it as that there are just in the environment that we work in. It's very important to us to improve upon neighborhoods in the communities that we serve. We find this in that we are not with the type of investments that we do. We are adding to the enrichment of a neighborhood, whether that's the enrichment financially and or the enrichment by of socially in many different aspects. Our goal is nothing to do with displacement but it's actually enhancement and how do we go ahead into work in cities that have a transitional, I'd say, a transitional tenant basis or employment basis provide safe, sound quality, affordable housing.
YA:Neveo and Jim, thank you very much both for your time today and thanks to our listener for tuning into breaking ground. Join us for our next podcast episode or visit Eisner amper.com/real estate. For more real estate news, you can use.
Transcribed by Rev.com