secretleaders | Could a startup solve homelessness? With Beam CEO Alex Stephany

Could a startup solve homelessness? With Beam CEO Alex Stephany

Wondering what to give as an unusual gift this year? How about donating in someone’s name to a social enterprise solving homelessness? Simply purchase a gift card for someone from Beam, and help a homeless person get back on their feet.

“There’s billions of pounds being spent on homelessness. More than 1000 organisations are tackling homelessness. There are millions of people in London who care about this issue. And yet still, despite all of this, people are literally dying outside of tube stations.”

Alex Stephany, founder and CEO of Beam, a social enterprise solving homelessness, has taken his particularly bold and ambitious problem solving mind and turned it toward tackling this problem.

But how does your donation help someone find a home? Well, it does more than that, through crowdfunding, you donate to specific individuals, who put the money towards training in their chosen vocation.

“The greatest economic opportunity you can give to people is a sense of self worth and an opportunity to contribute back to society because really, they don’t want donations. They want the ability to be in control of their own destiny.”

Alex shares the story of the first homeless person he helped, Tony, and how Tony was the inspiration to scale up Beam.

“I thought, well, if we can do that for one person, then what if we can do that for 100,000, or millions of people? What if we can use technology and operational processes to create this same life changing intervention for other people at scale?”

So, if you’re interested in learning how to solve real world problems AND make money in the process, don’t miss this incredible episode.

We chat about:

  • Founding Beam and its business model
  • Tony’s story
  • Frustrations when running Beam
  • Making money while doing social good
  • Scaling up Beam with tech
  • How to support Beam



The Secret Leaders podcast features interviews with key figures from the UK tech and creative ecosystem. From entrepreneurs (both early and latter stage), to journalists, VCs - and even royalty - the series profiles those who have helped shape the nation's culture of innovation and growth.