Earlier this year Dave and myself established the Perth annex to the Intilecta R&D office in a room that was sub-leased off Enpresiv. Unfortunately a couple of weeks ago the last of Enpresiv’s Perth employees went to work for local competitor Sumo which resulted in a decision to close their Perth office. This of course left us in a bit of a dilemma as we would have to relocate and after spending the last couple of months in the heart of the Perth CBD both of us were reluctant to go hunting for an alternative space that would likely be further out of town.
An option that immediately occurred to me was whether someone else could take on the full lease – this way Intilecta could continue to sub-lease and the rest of the office could also be sub-leased to another company. Luckily around this time I was talking with Scouta CEO/founder, Richard Giles about the posibility of setting up a community of Web2.0/startup companies. The idea would be to have an open-plan area where a number of these small companies could share ideas/knowledge and innovate together.
As of today I’m the new lease holder for Level 2/90 King Street! This means that we have 160sqm of office space to get this co-working space off the ground. We already have two companies involved, being Intilecta and PerthNorg, and I’m hoping to have two or three more companies involved in the coming month. PerthNorg is a great addition as it brings not only the premiere online Perth information/news site founded by Bronwen Clune to the space, it also means that Myles Eftos, of Port80, AWIA and MadPilot Productions fame, will be moving in.
It is still early days with the layout of the premise still in question but I suspect this will be in flux for a period as we work out the optimum way to configure the office.
I have two requests for comment/input:
Firstly, if you know of anyone, or interested yourself, in being involved in this co-working space (even if it is for 1 or 2 days a week) please feel free to contact me as it would be great to have some more people on board.
Secondly, I was discussing how many people/companies we could comfortably fit into this space. One option was to lay it out sweat-shop style, dub the place “Mini-Mumbai” and establish ourselves as an outsourcing alternative to India. I’m not sure this is what we are about, but it did raise a point about giving the space a name. If you have any suggestions for a name or have some experience setting out a co-working environment please feel free to drop a comment or two.
I’m really excited to get this co-working space off the ground and to see the amount of innovation that can be invoked from small companies working together.