Two Members Talk About How The Brew Has Helped Their Business
Expanding business in The Brew
Company: Studio 104
Founder and Managing Director: Jane Porter
Sector: Clothing – specialising in hospitality corporate clothing and uninforms
Funding: £10,000 start-up loan from her dad which she paid back within six months. Since then it has been self-funded.
Clients: Luxury hotels including: The Savoy, Dorchester, Gleneagles Hotel, Grosvenor House Park Lane, St Martin’s Lane, Shangri-La Shard, Mondrian London and Mondrian Doha. Diamond jewellers De Beers and many more.
Membership History at The Brew: Started with 2 members in 2012 expanding to six by the end of 2015.
Jane started Studio 104 from the kitchen table of her one bedroom flat in May 2010. Working by herself for 18 months, Jane found she felt lonely, she needed more company at times such as when she “was making a cuppa”.
As the business grew, and Jane took on a full-time employee, claustrophobia set in. Too many things were going on in her flat, and she felt her privacy was being encroached. Jane could no longer “fit the business in the flat” so she sought out a co-working space solution.
“I didn’t need a traditional office, but I wanted something easy,” says Jane.
Continuing, Jane elaborates on what appealed to her about joining a co-working space: “It had to be an easy transition. I also didn’t want to think about bills. Really it was about the routine, being able to get up, leave the flat and go to work, and then go home. It sounds simple, but that was really important. In the end I chose The Brew as it met all of these requirements. On my first day, I felt really excited, like I was going to school for the first time!”
Jane joined The Brew Shoreditch Stables in Easter 2012 with her one employee.
Of the type of environment she was looking for, Jane says, “Light was very important, space and the way the building looks inside and out. I asked myself whether the co-working space fits in with who we are. With The Brew, it helped that the pricing was cost-effective. And I now have ready-made mates who I socialise with often – they really attract a great community, and being with people who have the same mentality is very important to us.”
Now four years later, Jane has a team of ten and credits The Brew with helping her to expand the business.
“Being in the right environment has helped to grow my business. There’s no pressure at The Brew if you want to shrink you can, if want to grow you can. It’s flexible and easy.”
Moving through the ecosystem: From Nomad to Co-working
Company: Stealth Start-up
Nigel and his team started in the Coffice, as a Nomad member, from late 2015 when the first plans/proposals were discussed for the start-up. Nigel then formed the new company in January 2016.
Before being a Nomad, Nigel and the team spent a lot of time having meetings at home. However, he comments that “this was not ideal due to the number of distractions we experienced, and also poor internet connections.”
The Coffice was just what Nigel and his team needed at this early stage of the business because of its ”amazingly fast broadband”, central and well connected location, flexibility and the ability to “drop in as and when is convenient.”
However, once Nigel discovered more about the other offerings available at the Eagle House business club, it soon became apparent that it would be better for them to join as a co-working member. On this Nigel, explains:
“Almost immediately we realised that being a Nomad would no longer be suitable. We are now four full-time staff but will be 5 by mid-March and 8 by the time that we go live in summer 2016, so we have now taken co-working membership in the The Brew Eagle House.”
For Nigel, deciding on what sort of environment his new business required was a simple listing of priorities including location, security and excellent business services.
But specifically, The Brew Eagle House, as a transition from being a Nomad, appealed to Nigel, because he says, “the cost is reasonable, the services are good, the staff are pleasant and efficient and other similar co-working spaces "were patchy at best”.