With over 50,000 start-ups, India boasts of the third largest startup ecosystem in the world after the US and China. A country with a Prime Minister so passionate about start-ups, India has improved its ranking to #52 in the Global Innovation Index from #81 in the year 2015. Definitely a burgeoning space, the startup ecosystem has attracted equity funding of about $14.5 Billion in 2019.

We all have come across stories of some or the other start-ups that have started off from their garages, bedrooms, basements or study, then found an office, set up a team and made it big onto the highest echelons. All of these struggle stories may sound interesting when heard in the later stages of business but point towards the need of an office space – the ground zero for any founder. While it is ‘cool’ to work from wee places during the very early stages of your start-up, you’ll have to change at some point. Restaurants, cafes or coffee shops can’t be your regular meeting spaces. Working from home has its own set of challenges, you need to expand out into some office space and put the ‘right’ address on your business card.

The right address is needed just as much as the product or service you’re offering. Given the skyrocketing real estate prices, a good address will cost a lot and a fortune sometime, thus eating up into a major pie of ones total expenditure.

According to a report by Knight Frank India, real estate expenses account for about 9-12 percent of the overall operating costs for an established corporate. This figure could further amplify in case of a startup. To address this concern, the startups are actively opting for the co-working spaces that can be rented out on an hourly, daily or monthly basis.

Often termed as plug-and-play offices, these co-working spaces are expected to witness a surge in the demand. According to a JLL report, the potential market size of co-working spaces in India is expected to reach 13.5 million users by 2020.

Co-working spaces are the sweet spot for startups and entrepreneurs seeking an office to kickstart their operations. Here’s a look at the major benefits that startups and entrepreneurs can reap out of co-working spaces.

Flexibility beyond the clock

One of the major advantages provided to any start-up or entrepreneur by a co-working space is to choose flexible working hours in the workplace.

Akin to their professional approach, their workspace also ought to be distinct. This urge is well-satiated by the co-working spaces, as they offer plenty of options to choose right from dedicated desks to private cabins or cubicles.

Co-working spaces not only provide facilities at par with the full-fledged corporate set-ups, but also offer basic facilities like pantry, lockers, lounges, and play areas.

Furthermore, requirement- based meeting rooms and conference halls add to a greater flexibility that every startup and entrepreneur would yearn for.

Access to a talented pool of individuals

Start-ups need to increase their employee base in order to grow and expand; here co-working spaces are a great alternative with less capital investment. Since, most co-working spaces are flooded with freelancers, one can even get the eligible candidate within the same co-working space.

Additional perks

Co-working spaces are not just humongous areas with desks and chairs that offer high-speed internet access, but are also equipped with a plethora of additional facilities to improve productivity.

Co-working spaces are known to provide a surfeit of top-notch office facilities right from faster broadband to printing, scanning facilities and many more. Day-care facilities, pet areas etc are also some avenues many office spaces are exploring & providing to their patrons.

Affordable rentals

Most importantly, co-working spaces are much more affordable for start-ups vis-à-vis a traditional office space. In the case of a traditional office space combined with a compulsory security deposit, the most typical lease is between two and ten years. On the contrary, co-working spaces are based on pay per use model with rentals in accordance with the number of seats required. These venues, dedicated to providing a variety of business solutions, are available at very low rates. In addition, most spaces have flexible membership options wherein one can rent the space for even a day or get a tailormade subscription

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