As coworking spaces become increasingly popular among the startup community and companies with distributed workforces, the Eastside expands its offerings
In regions dense with startups, distributed work teams, and freelancers, coworking spaces are in high demand. The Eastside is such a region. In addition to providing inexpensive office space, coworking spaces cultivate a sense of community, helping forge relationships, bridge industries, and support those who need it most.
Bellevue-based ExtraSlice has taken this concept one step further, hyper-focusing its vision as a hub for tech companies of varying sizes and cultivating a tight-knit, supportive community where tech reigns supreme.
ExtraSlice goes the extra mile
ExtraSlice isn’t your typical coworking space. The 15,000-square-foot facility, located at Benaroya I-90 South, is more than just a multitude of office spaces; it’s also a hybrid technology park that works with a global network of service and training providers to better connect the local technology community to the rest of the world.
Meghana Subramanian, ExtraSlice co-founder and co-CEO, said ExtraSlice’s differentiating factor is that it’s not just focused on space but also on making it easy for people to build tomorrow’s technology.
“When it comes to most coworking spaces, the focus is real estate,” Subramanian said. “We are a company founded by engineers. We founded the company because we saw the pain that it’s very hard for people with a passion to build something new, to collaborate, make it happen, and bring it to the world. That is why this company was born: to help people build tomorrow’s technology.”
Through this level of support and connectivity, Subramanian said, ExtraSlice is able to create a community that symbiotically serves all its members. “We want to be a platform for multiple providers to connect with each other and create an ecosystem where they can feed each other and grow,” Subramanian said.
In addition to the space and services it provides its members, which includes access to classes and training, discounted services, a professional network, and more, ExtraSlice extends its efforts to the entire tech community through tech-focused events like its inaugural Bellevue Technology Expo and Pitch Competition. The event, which took place in November, attracted a crowd of more than 300.
Subramanian said bringing the tech community together through ExtraSlice and events is important. “When more tech companies are clustered in an environment, the chances for us to attract more investors from around the world is high,” Subramanian said. “Bringing investors in to this group — bringing the right service providers to help protect companies, all together in one location — that can create an ecosystem for many companies to succeed.”
ExtraSlice isn’t the only coworking space on the Eastside working to support startups and growing businesses. Here’s a snapshot of a few others:
With locations in Redmond and Seattle, Thinkspace serves more than 300 companies, providing businesses with access to physical and virtual office space, meeting rooms, and a variety of tech-acceleration services. Its mission is to “build a strong community of entrepreneurs, tech startups, small businesses, and nonprofits which share similar core values.” The company does this by celebrating its members’ successes and creating an inspirational environment where they can thrive.
From startups to global entrepreneurs, Regus has been providing flexible workspace solutions for businesses since 1989. Founded in Brussels, the company has a global presence and multiple locations on the Eastside.
There is a space for startups and small businesses of all types at Redmond’s Orange Studios. The coworking company’s three-tiered membership plan is designed to grow with businesses and startups still finding their footing. Orange Studios also offers services specifically for startups, including networking events and resources to help burgeoning businesses navigate the wild world of funding. Did we mention Orange Studios also is pet-friendly and features an onsite gym and showers?
Impact HUB is a coworking space that provides members with myriad options for office space, including shared and private offices of varying sizes. What sets Impact HUB apart from other coworking spaces, however, is its core values. At the heart of Impact HUB’s mission are social good and environmental stewardship. Businesses that operate out of this space are reminded of these values often. Impact HUB will relocate from its current Bellevue location, which is slated for demolition to make way for the East Link light rail, at the beginning of 2017. There’s also an Impact HUB in Seattle.
WeWork was founded in New York in 2010. Seven years later, the coworking company is opening a space in Bellevue. WeWork’s new Eastside hub will be located at the new Lincoln Square expansion and is slated to open in early 2017.
This article originally appeared in the January 2017 issue of “425 Business.”