Creating workable spaces

When India was focused on the growing start-up culture in tier 1 cities, founder of Incuspaze Sanjay Choudhary understood the potential that smaller cities had to offer and developed on an idea that was set to change the lives of aspiring entrepreneurs across the subcontinent. Conceptualised in 2016, Incuspaze is Sanjay’s first venture post a successful stint of over 15 years in the corporate world. He shares his entrepreneurial journey with us here: 

Inspiration

While looking for work spaces in 2016 in a tier 2 city, this MBA grad was surprised to find that there weren’t any co-working spaces there. “As I realised this need gap while working on a different venture, it gave me an insight into a larger problem that was very much a reality for the booming entrepreneurial culture in these cities — the lack of a working space that gives you access to needed amenities at affordable prices”, says this entrepreneur who hails from Udaipur. This set the ball rolling for a venture to build co-working spaces that not only offered these innovative minds with a place to work from, but also gave them an opportunity to network and meet the right set of people who would help them to advance their entrepreneurial goals. “I truly believed that a space like this could be the centre of a local ecosystem that would help building this community”, he adds.   

Achievements

Strategic partnership with SIDBI wherein - the company would be supporting their vision to uplift the MSME sector by providing them with a well-equipped space to carry out their day to day operations. . 

Challenges

Introducing the concept of co-working to clients in tier II cities was the first major challenge for Choudhary. “People here were not well versed with the concept, and thus it took us a while to find the right audience for our idea”. 

The second challenge was to establish a standard operating procedure that would be followed at all  spaces. “This involved a lot of brainstorming and discussions on the backend, followed by training of the operational staff and ensuring implementation of the said policies across all centres”, says Choudhary. 

A word of advice

“My advice for new entrepreneurs and start-up owners would be to focus on building a holistic business and acquiring loyal customers rather than just concentrating on perfecting the product. 

The longevity and success of every venture, depends on how one treats their consumer. This is a skill that forms the foundation of a good business practice and customer service and experience should be given equal importance. If you can enhance this skill and create an army of consumers that would vouch for you - you will see that Investment will chase you and not vice-versa!”

Future Plans 

“My vision is to make Incuspaze the first co-working space provider that is a multi-national corporation. We are hopeful that we would be able to open our first centre in London by December 2019”. With a focus on tier II and tier III cities Choudhary is planning to expand into 12 Indian states with 35 centres, reaching a capacity of over 15,000 seats by 2020. “Further, we also plan on aggressively expanding worldwide and achieving the target of one lakh seats globally by 2022.  We are also keen on collaborating with hotels and cafés via a co-branding arrangement to use the available empty spaces in a constructive manner by converting them into co-working spaces managed by Incuspaze”. 

 — As told to Geetu Vaid