I’m an operator of two small spaces in the UK. As those of you here know, the govt here is giving support to smaller ‘retail, leisure and hospitality’ businesses in the form of a grant (either £25,000 or £10,000 based on the size of your premises), plus no business rates for a year.
It’s clear that they don’t understand coworking spaces- clearly I say this as an operator myself, but as far as I can see we are pretty much the only businesses that have been forgetten. We (me at least) operate on B1 use classes/licenses (offices and premises), but we operate a new model which is part office and part ‘retail, leisure and hospitality’.
Coworking is a huge part of the economy now, and I think we all agree that our indsustry is going to BOOM once all this is over- yes people are going to work from home more, but this means MORE coworking not less, as more people discover that coworking is as much about the ‘co’ as the ‘working’. 90% of our members also work from home, and the combination of the two is what make it all work.
I raised a concern with our regional authority (WECA is ours) and they passed my concerns onto central govt, who are actively looking at gaps in their emergency help. WECA have some back saying that they have been asked for more details about this and our industry and how it’s going to be affected.
Please- now is the time to step up and mail your local or regional authority, or your favourite business organisation- business link, chamber of commerce, whoever. We can amplify this message and get the govt to do the right thing- and if this saves even some of us from going under then it will have been worth it.
Take care and stay safe everyone