WORKSPACE, a premium serviced office space, launched its operations in Bangalore with a panel discussion on “How the Sharing Economy is disrupting industries and shaping the future”. The panellists – Amarendra Sahu (Co-founder & CEO, Nestaway), Ramakant Sharma (Co-founder, Livspace), Rahul Agrawal (Founder and CEO, Workspace), and Neha Bagaria (Founder and CEO, Jobsforher) – discussed the dramatic growth of the sharing economy in India, and its role in fostering an era of collaboration. The panel discussion was held at Workspace’s new 1000-seater facility, located in the heart of the city at MG Road.
Sharing Economy is a global phenomenon, driven by a new millennial mindset that cares less about ownership and more about the value created for the consumer. According to Brookings Institution, this global phenomenon will become a USD 335 billion dollar industry by 2025. Some, including the economist and writer Jeremy Rifkin, have suggested that Sharing Economy is the ‘future of society and market capitalism’. New-age startups have disrupted various industries by using Sharing Economy to compete against legacy systems, and the success of companies like Airbnb and Uber have validated their faith in the concept.
In India, Sharing Economy has already touched thousands of lives through the evolution of ride-sharing companies like Ola and Uber. Even in terms of leasing commercial real estate for opening offices, co-working spaces and premium office space providers are disrupting the industry by offering greater convenience and services in addition to networking opportunities and flexibility. The panellists at the event contemplated the future role of Sharing Economy in influencing consumer preferences, identifying its current impact and providing insights into where it is likely to take the Indian economy in the future.
Commenting on the launch and the discussion, Rahul Agrawal, Founder and CEO, WORKSPACE, said, “Shared offices have started replacing traditional offices and offer the same infrastructure and amenities at a lower cost to companies. In today’s fast-paced environment, it is difficult for companies to have a long-term workforce plan. Shared offices give companies the much-needed flexibility, allowing them to focus on other important aspects of their business.
The trend has caught up rapidly in the last couple of years and multiple coworking spaces have opened their doors across cities, targeting freelancers and early-stage startups. However, most established and large companies also need a high-quality, flexible workplace solution to address their changing workforce needs and Workspace fills that gap perfectly. We are happy to open our first property, an important step towards our aim of becoming India’s largest and most-preferred serviced office space. We have walked the extra mile in ensuring that our clients experience unmatched comfort and hospitality at Workspace.”
Amarendra Sahu, Cofounder & CEO, Nestaway, said, “The fundamental concept behind Sharing Economy is that the same product can be utilized by multiple people. It is less expensive to share goods with others, than to own them individually. Today’s consumer is more focused on experiences rather than material possessions and while convenience and cost are cornerstones of the sharing economy, it is trust that makes the consumers keep coming back. Companies that understand the importance of trust and provide consistent customer experience throughout, will continue to thrive.”
Ramakant Sharma, Cofounder, Livspace, said, “Smartphones have disrupted the way people consume goods and services and have moved them to an on-demand consumption model, where they get what they want, when they want. Technology has reduced transaction costs significantly and transactions are becoming more real-time by way of mobile and cloud. Technology platforms organize both demand and supply and connect them to each other, allowing people to leverage excess capacity, be it cars or homes or anything else.”
Neha Bagaria, Founder and CEO, JobsForHer said, “What is driving this trend is the changing preferences of the young workforce. The nature of workplaces and the needs of employees have changed over time. On the one hand, as competition increases, companies are looking for new and innovative ways to increase their margins and improve overall efficiencies, and on the other hand, employees are increasingly placing more value on personal time. The ‘shared economy’ concept meets both ends of the spectrum. This concept is great for women returnees as work-from-home and part-time/freelance assignments are amenable to types of work that can be done anywhere. Writing, graphic design, IT, sales and data analysis are all examples of kinds of work that can be designed for flexi-time arrangements.”
WORKSPACE’s new 65,000 sq. ft. facility is designed to offer an elegant solution to those seeking a new office location, and provides excellent connectivity with the Metro network. The state-of-the-art infrastructure includes an executive lounge, virtual office facilities, a plush boardroom equipped with video conferencing, numerous meeting rooms and breakout areas. Recreational facilities include a large rooftop café, well-equipped gym, salon, and crèche. The facility is designed to accommodate differently sized companies, right from small startups to large MNCs. The unparalleled location is complemented by premium interiors providing a conducive environment for employees to be productive and relaxed. Workspace, with its upmarket clientele, also offers unrivalled networking and business opportunities.
Workspace is a premium serviced office space that offers an elegant ambience and a wide range of amenities for the serious worker, supported by best-in-class hospitality. The company plans to open multiple large offices in Bangalore, and is looking to expand to all major Indian urban centres by FY-19.