The post-Covid economic recovery is witnessing accelerated adoption of flex spaces/co-working spaces. The blend of workforce and economic variables is fuelling new trends. The rise of the gig economy, the start-up ecosystem, the great resignation, work-from-home, hybrid working, rebalancing of the global supply chains, ample credit supply and the economic recovery are presenting newer opportunities for the Coworking industry to be innovative and explore new niches with more relatable services.
Coworking is a norm now. The flex spaces ecosystem and government regulation are fast catching up with the emerging trends for offering innovative products. The demand-side pressure from the workforce is seeking an increasingly demanding hybrid and hyper-flexible work culture from businesses. Each industry and community segment is demanding unique experiences and spaces, industry-specific resources, more often with a sustainability theme and embeds unique community-focused value-added services. Coworking companies offering managed office spaces are increasingly meeting the demands of their industry-specific clients.
Coworking for Food Start-ups
Based in Amsterdam, The Kitchen Republic blends kitchens with offices and event venues. They help start-ups with professional kitchen space, the right connections within the industry, event and office space and access to the largest community of food entrepreneurs in the Netherlands. They provide access to top-of-the-line day kitchen rentals, Coworking office space, plug-and-play scale-up units, and fully equipped start-up commercial kitchens through their Coworking for chefs.
Based in Chicago, The Hatchery Chicago is a non-profit food and beverage incubator committed to assisting regional business owners in starting and expanding prosperous enterprises. They encourage local food and beverage entrepreneurs, nurture local employment possibilities, and boost local economies through their state-of-the-art commercial cooking facilities, comprehensive entrepreneurship curriculum, and partnerships with corporate sponsors and foundations. The Hatchery offers storage, Coworking, and kitchen solutions. This food and beverage business incubator is housed in a brand-new 67,000-square-foot production facility that also features a thriving community of food entrepreneurs, shared and private kitchen spaces, cold/dry/freezer storage, loading/receiving docks, food truck servicing, Coworking space, meeting rooms, and event space meeting the needs for those in catering, baking, CPG products, meal kits, and a food truck businesses.
Coworking for Creative Spaces
Green Spaces, a co-working collective helps communities by giving artists, companies, and solopreneurs the tools and reasonably priced space they need to collaborate, develop, and stand up for their causes. Their spaces are designed for both collaborative conversations and quiet corners. They provide sustainably designed conference rooms, and fully equipped 130 sq ft of premium space for photographers, videographers and small businesses to work on their creative projects. They also provide exhibition halls to showcase creative work, photo shoots and corporate events. For enterprises, non-profits, remote employees, and sole proprietors, Green Spaces acts as a conduit and collective. Through philanthropic partnerships Green Spaces helps overlooked artists grow who can then in turn help others, creating a social contract for a sustainable cycle of empowerment. The future lies in creating bespoke Coworking environments for professionals.
Coliving and Coworking
Companies such as Selina’s focused tourism sector serve ultra-niche segments of travellers. They built their offerings on the needs of globe travellers, forever travellers, break-takers, surfers and staycaters. Their destination-focused Coliving and Coworking spaces are offered at urban centres to the depths of the Amazon Jungle. The range of their product offerings is diverse and intricate embedding local cultures, cuisines, local activities and other bespoke solutions. Their placement wonderfully captures the concept of the ecosystem, where one can live, dine, work, surf, explore, and develop a stronger sense of connectedness to the outside world. These businesses are sustainable as maximum revenue is retained in the local economies.
The trend is moving towards industry/community-specific Coworking spaces. Some of these industries are highly regulated such as the Pharmaceutical industry. The government policy and regulators must act swiftly to encompass market dynamics while Coworking operators also need to adhere to industry compliances. One such co-working environment for medical professionals has been introduced by Aartas CliniShare, a first-of-its-kind. The venture offers a fully digitalized and paperless environment, equipped with cutting-edge technologies and competent personnel for assistance. They offer all super specialities under one roof. Their venture boasts of a growth rate surpassing 20% month-over-month covering physician enrolments, patient traffic, pharmacy sales, and net revenue.
My Branch Services, a Narayan Bhargava Group company offers shared, managed and virtual office spaces spread across 70+ locations across 60+ cities in India. We partner with our clients in growth and aiding their cost-efficient expansions. We also offer legal and compliance services, manpower solutions and audit services to our clients. Essentially, we offer an ecosystem of business solutions to our clients.
The Coworking market is vibrant and ever-evolving with flexible working stock expected to cross 80 million sq. ft. by the end of 2025 in India. The Coworking operators, investors and property developers must increasingly collaborate to co-create innovative business models, carve out brand partnerships and create ecosystems inclusive of local context to meet diverse market needs. The governments must remove any policy vacuum while adopting a forward-looking policy framework and regulators must create viable and supportive legal frameworks to manage the markets. The evolution of the Coworking business and operating models such as propco-opco moving to revenue sharing amplified with brand partnerships for value-added services. The future of Coworking seems exciting.