This week is sponsored by… Rubberdesk!
Rubberdesk’s UK Office Space Market Report provides insights on the cost & availability of serviced offices in smaller UK markets.
Some findings: desk rates up to over 50% cheaper outside London; and new offices in Manchester, Birmingham, and Cardiff led to a 13% increase in available inventory.
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✊ Coworking impact.
🚿 Coworking group CEO makes a pledge to provide hot showers #
Jack Mason has pledged that any homeless person who needs a hot shower can now get one from their incspaces locations in Manchester, Leeds and Central London.
As well as arranging for a free haircut every month from King Street Grooming, Jack is calling on all coworking brands to get involved with supporting the homeless.
Coworking news & views.
🇺🇸 Federal US gov. agencies having a “coworking week” in November. #
The GSA will be testing out coworking spaces the week of November 14, and will first roll out the opportunity in Washington, D.C., Denver, and San Francisco. For this “coworking week,” Federal employees can test out coworking spaces for free and get a glimpse into what coworking would look like for their teams.
Not sure if/how this is related to the GSA + coworking news we shared in W34 of 2021, but an interesting development.
😲 How NOT to update your pricing and amenities #
Coworking space members in Atlanta are furious with local operator Switchyards for the way they recently handled a price increase and the removal of a cherished amenity (a superb barista).
I’m still looking into what exactly went down, but 690+ folks have engaged with this instagram post already.
💡 The role of hospitality-led service, amenities and tech in future workspaces #
John Preece shares a piece by Samantha Lewis, Shelby Burnett and Kelly Waters at Gensler, say that it is one of the best articles he’s read recently regarding the role of hospitality-led service, amenity and technology as critical success factors in workspace.
👩🏫 A quick introduction to franchising your coworking model. #
Franchising in coworking is growing rapidly. Off the top of my head, Coworks/UFG are building/buying multiple chains, Serendipity Labs are also growing through this route, and the IWG behemoth is expanding all their brands through franchising agreements. In this post andcards shares some tips on exploring whether franchising is the right move for you.
🧐 Design-led brand gets covered and reaches new markets #
Sarah Powless wrote about Malin in the now 10-year-old Cultured magazine. The article is great and highlights the brand’s design-led approach to building spaces (and opening a new one), but it’s great to see coworking promoted into whole new markets who may have felt that "coworking wasn’t for them".
Now… just to get them to drop the hyphen in coworking.
🇩🇪 Funded local coworking space starts with pop-up test phase #
The city of Eberbach is implementing a pop-up test phase in cooperation with the business development department of the Rhein-Neckar district, the Rhein-Neckar region association and the service provider CoWorkLand. The pop-up will offer free workspaces and meeting space as part of their pilot program.
🇧🇬 A glimpse into a day at a new workspace #
Tony Aleksandrov shares a video highlighting the WorkBetter member experience. We’re seeing more and more videos putting the viewer within your community for a meeting, day or more. Are you experimenting with short and long-form videos for your space?
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💻 Coworking technology.
🍏 The wider implications of Apple’s access control play #
I’m a big fan of Glenn Felson’s newsletter, and this week he dove into the wider implications on proptech (and tenant experience apps) of Apple diving deeper into access control.
ICYMI: I shared that Apple was making this move back in week 27, 2021.
💸 Chicago-based operator launches $15M fund to invest in workplace innovation. #
Caitlin McAllister shares that Workbox Company have raised a $15M fund to invest in innovative solutions across the workplace sector. The venture capital arm (called Workbox Ventures) of the coworking brand will be led by Phillip Leslie will invest in 3 areas: HR tech, financial tech (fintech) and property tech (proptech), but may deploy funds more widely into new workplace technologies.
Workbox team, and any other industry-specific funds, reach out if you’d like to hear where I’d deploy those funds. Only half kidding.
🇬🇧 One to watch: LinkedIn News UK running poll on coworking #
LinkedIn News UK’s poll asking "what are your thoughts on coworking spaces?" has already accrued over 3,500 votes and had over 50 comments (at time of TWIC curation).
The options are ‘better than an office’, ‘not for me’, ‘ok for a few days a week’, or ‘other’. Check out the comments for both operator responses, and non-operators sharing their thought son coworking in the UK.
🌁 Office vacancy in SF at all time high #
According to CBRE San Francisco has 27.1M sqft of office space available, a record high.
This presents a huge opportunity for flex operators pursuing rev-share and other partnership agreements with landlords, especially if the demand curve for flex in the region is up and to the right.
🌏 Latest numbers show 3,500+ networked locations #
IWG shared a public update on their network size, putting them at over 3,500+ locations across 13 brands.
🤑 New report puts global coworking market value over $13B by 2025 #
Arthur T shares that they surveyed their coworking space partners and aggregated property data to show the impact of the coworking space market throughout the past 2 years.
It’s an impressive amalgamation of various reports, including noting that the global coworking market value is expected to pass $13B (with a capital B) by 2025, that IWG has 11% market share (WeWork has 2%) and zooms into the Singaporean, Australian and American markets.
🗽 Flex demand growing faster than supply in NYC #
The Instant Group share that flex space demand in New York City is up 19% from last year, but supply is only up 7% (up to 495 spaces). Also interesting is that enquiries through the group’s portals for 3-9 desks increased the most, by 57% between 2021 and 2022.
Coworking market moves.
🇩🇪 New workation hotel opening in Jan from experience coworking operator #
Ansgar Oberholz shares that St. Oberholz will be opening a new concept and location in Jan 2023. The space become "Germany’s first workation hotel" supporting companies with team offsites, helping remote workers mix work and rest, and more.
🇬🇧 UK provider offers SME-focussed discounts amid cost-of-living hardship #
Wybo Wijnbergen shares that infinitSpace’s flagship workspace at beyond Aldgate Tower is offering reduced rates on all their offices, and are freezing prices for 6 months for all members ahead of a "difficult winter".
As economies hit hard times across the globe, could we see a dip in operating profits as businesses’ budgets tighten, or even another race-to-the bottom as operators get pulled into competing on price to win SMB deals?
🇺🇸 Local hub network announces 10 new US locations #
Barry Greenfield shares that LocalWorks are expanding with 10 new locations coming soon in Atlanta, Detroit, DC, Chicago and Denver. This brings the total number of their locations in the US to almost 50.
↘️ Iconic European brand takes a down-round, but lives to fight another day. #
Sifted shares how Second Home have sold a majority stake to LA-based investor Riaz Valani for £7.8M (≈$8.6M), signalling a huge drop from the pioneering network’s previous £130M (≈$142M) valuation.
The move wipes out the firms prolific angel investors’ stakes, but does allow the brand to keep lights on and serving members for the near future.
🌍 Pan-African network announced partnership with Dubai-based network #
Gregoire Schwebig shares that AfricaWorks is partnering with One Space to allow for members to access each others spaces. Given that over 21k African businesses are registered in Dubai, this is a logical and potentially useful partnership for members of both networks.
🎙 Coworking conversations.
Scott Chambers chats with Jamie Russo about his 20+ years of industry experience and growing a multi-location team on the Everything Coworking podcast.
Jonathan Weinbrenn chats with Caleb Parker about partnerships, JVs and repurposing a 58k iconic building from 1857 on the WorkBold podcast.
Brandon Madeiros shares how Alidade Partners help both, operators and asset owners make informed decisions about their real-estate through data-driven analyses on the Flex Uncensored podcast.
📆 Coworking events.
🎨 Interior Design in Coworking Spaces #
31 October | Online – an exploration, one that will take you from Bangkok to Mumbai, Viana do Castelo, and Stuttgart to meet founders and teams of coworking spaces who’ve used interior design as a means of differentiation.