Coworking concept gains ground in Cebu
Ehda M. Dagooc (The Freeman) - January 11, 2020 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines —  Cebu, being the entrepreneurship melting pot in Southern Philippines, will see more coworking space facilities to open this year.

“The continued growth of MSMEs and start-ups should fuel demand for flexible workspace. Given this trend and the worsening traffic in Cebu, we encourage developers to carve out more flexible office space especially in malls,” said Joey Roi Bondoc, senior research manager at Colliers International Philippines.

Based on a survey conducted by Colliers, availability of work space facilities in Cebu grew by 20 percent to 30 percent growth in flexible space including coworking last year.

Coworking space is an arrangement in which several workers from different companies share an office space, allowing cost savings and convenience through the use of common infrastructure, such as equipment, utilities, and receptionist and custodial services, and in some cases refreshments and parcel acceptance services.

The coworking concept is becoming the new normal for the young generation, which is largely driven by the growing number of millennials who are embracing entrepreneurship and freelancing.

The report thereby encouraged developers to build more of this kind of facilities for Cebu, as the demand is rising at a fast pace.

Last month, London-based flexible workspace provider, International Workplace Group (IWG) entered a partnership deal with Cebuano developer AppleOne Properties Inc., (API) to strengthen its footprint in Cebu and other parts of the Visayas. API is the first IWG franchisee in the Asia Pacific.

According to Lars Wittig, IWG country manager for the Philippines, Thailand, Vietnam, Cambodia and South Korea, the Philippines is highlighted as the best performing market in the world, in terms of flexible office business.

In the Philippines, IWG has 28 locations in 10 cities across Metro Manila, Cebu, Davao and Clark.

“We see strong growth rate outside Metro Manila,” said Wittig adding that based on their existing facilities in Cebu, they have to turn down clients most of the time because of high demand.

“We are seeing exciting growth taking place. Time is ripe for us,” Wittig added.

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