Co-Working Start-ups Gush in Post-Lockdown India

Co-working start-up is a lucrative business and post-lockdown demand is also high. So how to get the business going in the ‘new normal’?


Pandemic disrupted human life across nations especially the way we worked. Huge rents and electricity bills forced many start-ups to shut down their offices due to the high cost involved. Like other start-ups, co-working start-ups also faced the brunt and took a halt. However, post lockdown they slowly started gearing up.

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A solution-oriented business plan – ‘a unique selling point’ is must to be in the game for long.

Co-working spaces making a difference

During the lockdown, work from home (WFH) became the ‘new normal’. Post lockdown, the companies started working on a hybrid model that included work from home/remote location and work from office adhering to social distancing norms.

Real estate, any day was a huge cost so renting a ‘co-working space’ seemed a prime solution to many start-ups. Co-working start-ups work on providing the office space, infrastructure on a daily/monthly rental basis i.e. pay as you use. Thus, no hassle of hunting for real estate that meant higher cost otherwise.

Smartworks, one of the leading co-working space start-ups with facilities in different cities like Noida, Pune, Hyderabad and Bengaluru aims at flexible workspace arrangement and business continuity. Similarly, Insta office, WeWork, Innov8, myHQ, Awfis space solutions are breaking the stereotype with the majority of the start-ups being in Delhi/NCR, Mumbai and Bengaluru.

Need and Benefits of Co-working start-ups

Entrepreneurs understand WFH is the new normal. With the rapid increase in the number of start-ups, the need for co-working space is also on the rise. The co-working space benefits that were initially enjoyed by digital nomads, freelancers and entrepreneurs are open to every professional now. The co-working model gives an option to start-ups to scale up and down whenever required. It saves cost and proves really valuable in the early stages of the business.

It breaks the monotony and helps to revive any depressing soul to feel motivated and productive especially, the ones who are social and like networking.

Diverse community presence sharing the workspace with essential amenities (high-speed internet, tech-enabled conference rooms), no hierarchical distinctions often lead to innovation and new business ideas.

Market size of flexible working space

India is one of the largest flexible workplace markets in the world. According to Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL) report in November 2020, the Indian flexible space market was in the middle of a strong growth cycle until the pandemic. There was a signification rise in the total stock from 9.9 million square feet (MSF) in 2017 to 29.5 MSF by September 2020.

What’s in it for me?

Co-working space is one of the most lucrative businesses post lockdown. If you want to explore this business, you must define your vision (why you want to open it). You may have to change the strategy with time. However, the vision should be intact as to why you wanted to open the co-working business in the first place. A solution-oriented business plan – ‘a unique selling point’ is must to be in the game for long.

Keep your target audience in mind, if they are just freelancers/full-time employees or if you are planning to create a premium facility/affordable co-working space to ensure the returns are better, then investments. By following best practices like simple contract negotiations, short-notice movement plans, you may build a giant and flexible co-working space and become a game-changer in this competitive start-up business.

Roopali Kotwal
Roopali Kotwal
Roopali is an industry expert with over a decade of experience. An alumna of Delhi University she writes on Human Resource Management and Business Operations.

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