5 Big Companies That Actually Started At Coworking Spaces

Coworking spaces have long been hailed as ideal launchpads for startup entrepreneurs and innovators. The work-focused environment, coupled with reasonable rates makes coworking a better, more affordable choice than renting a physical office.

Interestingly, some of the world’s biggest companies started out as coworking clients. In this article, we’ll tell you about 5 instantly-recognizable tech brands that had their humble beginnings in coworking spaces.

5 companies that started in coworking spaces

#1. Hootsuite

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Ryan Holmes of Vancouver, Canada used to run an agency back in 2008. At the time, he found it Ryan Holmes of Vancouver, Canada used to run an agency in 2008. He felt extremely frustrated that he needed to log into multiple social media accounts for his marketing campaigns back then. He eventually came up with a solution to the dilemma by creating his own social media management platform.

The service was initially introduced as BrightKit but was later renamed Hootsuite after the suggestion of Twitter netizen Matt Nathan. The company started to take flight while using a San Francisco coworking space.

Now Hootsuite is “used in almost every country and territory in the world - 200 and counting.” They also have over 200,000 subscribers who use the service to “tell their stories, engage with their audiences, and build businesses.”

#2. Indiegogo

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Known today as the world’s largest crowdfunding website, Indiegogo was founded in 2008 by Danae Ringelmann, Eric Schell and Slava Rubin.

The company used a coworking space in San Francisco during their early years. Apparently, the three founders struggled to find funding for their individual projects. Danae wanted to produce a play. Eric had difficulties running a theater company. Slava wanted to discover a cure for an illness that claimed his father’s life. They later turned to the internet in a mission to connect innovators and entrepreneurs with willing backers.   

Indiegogo has since helped “bring more than 800,000 innovative ideas to life since 2008,” according to their website. “Today, our group of backers is more than 9 million strong, representing 235 countries and territories.”

#3. Instagram

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The social media giant was initially launched on Apple’s iOS by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger in October 2010. Back then, it was a mobile check-in app called Burbn. The two founders later realized that the service was too similar to Foursquare. So they gave it a tweak - they focused on pictures and improve their photo filter features further.

The app was later renamed as Instagram and the rest, as they say, is history.

Instagram quickly became the social networking service of choice for food and travel enthusiasts. In April 2012, Facebook purchased the company for US$1 billion in cash and stock.

Definitely not a bad achievement for an app developed by two guys during their stay at San Francisco-based Dogpatch Labs. And they did it all within eight weeks!

#4. Spotify

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Audio streaming platform Spotify has revolutionized the way people listen to and create music. The service was created by founders Daniel Ek and Martin Lorentzon in Stockholm, Sweden. It later gained fame in the United States. The partners used Rocket Space coworking spaces.

Apparently, the two created the company as a response to widespread piracy. File-sharing sites LimeWire, Napster, and Pirate Bay made downloading music easy back then. Artists and recording companies protested against the illegal practice because it meant loss of potential earnings.

“I realized that you can never legislate away from piracy,” Daniel later said in a Telegraph interview. So they sought out to "solve the problem." The two created service "that was better than piracy and at the same time compensates the music industry.”

Today, Spotify has become “the world’s most popular audio streaming subscription service.” They now have over 180 million premium subscribers and 406 million monthly active users worldwide.

#5. Uber

The idea behind Uber first came to Garrett Camp and Travis Kalanick in December 2008. The two were in Paris during a cold, snowy evening and weren’t having any luck getting a taxi. So they thought of a modern solution for the age-old problem: what if it was possible to find rides using a mobile device?

In March 2009, the partners launched Uber as a smartphone app enabling members of the public to easily find available transportation in their localities. At the time, the company operated from The Yard, a shared workspace in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Years later, they moved to San Francisco-based coworking provider Rocket Space.

Fast forward to the present, the American ride-sharing company has now become a massive brand, reaching numerous countries and territories across the world. Plus they have expanded beyond connecting riders and drivers by introducing Uber Eats, Uber Freight, and other services.

“We’ve gone from rides on 4 wheels to rides on 2 wheels to 18-wheel freight deliveries,” the official Uber website tells us. “From takeout meals to daily essentials to prescription drugs to just about anything you need at any time.”

Coworking spaces can be perfect for you, too!

Ready to take your startup to a whole new level? Working at our coworking spaces will give you the focus and inspiration you need to potentially become the next big name in your industry. 

Go give us a call on (917) 722-5027 or send us an email via [email protected] for your inquiries. Better yet, book a tour with our friendly staff members so we can show you around our facilities and explain all the fantastic perks that come with being a Farm SoHo member.

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