BQ picks out its top 10 spots for start-ups and freelancers looking to share office space in Cardiff.
There’s a new trend in the business world which is changing the way entrepreneurs and start-ups across the globe go about their day-to-day business: co-working.
Co-working is effectively an alternative to traditional office space, allowing independent workers and entrepreneurs to share an open workspace instead of the traditional cubicle or makeshift set up in a coffee shop.
The idea of co-working has really started to take off in recent years, led by the rise in mobile technology, and is now more popular than ever before as freelancers and small business owners swap their pyjamas and home computers for shared office space.
And it’s no real surprise when you look at the perks associated with co-working. Not only can like-minded entrepreneurs bounce ideas off each other but it’s also extremely cost-effective, helps you network with new people and usually comes with free internet access and unlimited tea and coffee!
Sound interesting? Well not to worry. Being the forward-thinking region that Cardiff is, it was one of the first to capitalise on the co-working boom and there are more and more co-working hubs popping up across the region every year.
Here are our top co-working hubs for creative entrepreneurs just like you:
Since launching in Cardiff back in 2010, Indycube has gone on to establish itself as one of the UK’s most successful co-working providers.
Founder Mark Hooper opened his first site after being inspired by the rise of co-working across the pond in New York and wanted to replicate its success in Wales.
The company now has an impressive 27 sites dotted across Wales and has helped hundreds of Welsh start-ups succeed and grow.
This rapid growth has been underpinned by Indycube’s cheap yet fulfilling offering. As a resident of Indycube, start-ups receive desk space, access to meeting rooms, free internet and can also tap into business support and even funding streams.
Depending on the site, you can also hire studio space and get involved in the FAB LAB business support network, spearheaded by BIC Pembroke and FAB LAB Cardiff.
Not to forget, all members also have access to free tea and coffee to keep them going!
Availability: A pay-as-you-go desk at one of IndyCube’s co-working hubs costs £12 per day however there are other packages ranging from part time (£60 per month), half time (£100 per month) and full time (£180 per month).
Rabble’s co-working studio is on the third floor of 103 Bute Street, a Victorian building with high ceilings, wooden floors and lots of light.
The hub boasts a large communal work area with 16 hand-built desks, a lounge for relaxing, eating and casual working, a kitchen and a meeting room.
On top of these benefits, members also have access to printing facilities, a lightbox and free hot and cold drinks.
Rabble also holds studio breakfasts and lunches, events, group outings, chit chat on tap and the occasional Friday beer and film session.
Availability: Rabble’s packages range from a five day per month co-working subscription (£50 per month) through to 12 days a month (£100 per month) and permanent desk space (£180 per month).
Tramshed Tech is a collaborative workspace aimed primarily at businesses in the tech and creative industries.
Kitted out with wood tables and seating and glass panelled walls – the hub is one of the most aesthetically pleasing co-working spaces you’ll find anywhere in Wales and is the perfect place to get your creative juices flowing.
Whether you are a brand-new tech start-up or a highly experienced designer - or anything in between - there is plenty of opportunity for you to grow your business at Tramshed. There's also plenty of free coffee and perhaps the odd beer or two!
What makes Tramshed stand out though, and also makes it very appealing to techies in particular, is the fact that unlike many other co-working providers, it offers 24-hour access. Members can also access a private phone booth, conference rooms, use HD projectors and tap into the free wi-fi and refreshments.
Availability: Tramshed’s co-working spaces range from a one-day session (£15) to part time (£100 for 60 hours per month) and full time (£200 per month).
The Sustainable Studio
The Sustainable Studio has breathed new life in to an old industrial warehouse to create an open plan co-working community in the heart of Cardiff.
Launched a year ago this month, all of its studios are made from reclaimed wood and its furniture, fixtures and fittings have had a previous life somewhere else. It's an inspiring space to work, relax and do something amazing with a group of like-minded individuals.
By becoming a Sustainable Studio member, you receive desk space (or a studio if you pay a little more), free wi-fi and refreshments, locker space, 24/7 access (very handy), free parking and bike lockup spaces.
Availability: Prices start from as little as £12 for a day or from £100 per month to become a member with 24/7 access.
Meanwhile Creative was was founded in 2012 with the goal of turning dormant office buildings into thriving work hubs for Bristol’s small businesses and creatives.
Company founder Fred kicked things off by taking over two floors of a derelict police station right in the heart of the city and naming it Bridewell Space.
The company has since launched a new co-working hub in Cardiff, doubling its space with a further 60 desk spaces for start-ups in South Wales to work from.
Meanwhile Cretaive provides a quiet environment, so it doesn’t come with desk phones, however it is perfect for those wanting to get their heads down and work.
It provides members with access to meeting rooms, a kitchen with all the bare necessities and fixed desk space.
Availability: Working at Meanwhile cost £90 per month. This is an all-inclusive price with no service charges, bills or business rates.
The team at Chwarae Teg have transformed a typical office into a place where start-ups can work more effectively in a flexible and dynamic space.
Members get office space in Chwarae Teg’s incubator room which comes complete with a shared desk and cupboard space, plus there’s lots of other perks including access to meeting rooms, free parking, first refusal of free events held at Anchor Court, and Ad Hoc support available such as basic bookkeeping/payroll/HR services and business finance advice.
Availability: Start-ups can join Chwarae Teg from as little as £7 a day however use of other rooms such as events space and formal rooms have added costs.
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