18 Oct 2017, JESUS ALCOCER (Bangkokpost)- The co-working industry is hot in Thailand, but who exactly pays close to 300 baht per day to use these spaces, and why do they choose these spaces instead of working from home or from a coffee shop?
From cost, location, a place to grab some shut-eye, eat a snack or even build a community, the factors behind the popularity of the capital's shared work spaces are as sundry as they are surprising
The number of co-working space operators drastically increased from four in 2012 to close to 100 in 2016. Telecom companies Advanced Info Service (AIS), Total Access Communication, and True Move already control a substantial part of the market, with affordable spaces aimed at attracting startups and retaining high-spending customers.
Hubba, one of the first co-working spaces in the country, is planning to open a massive venue in Bangkok with space for 50 startups. Luxembourg-headquartered IWG Plc (formerly known as Regus) will also open a new location under the Spaces brand, which is more focused on co-working than its current office and corporate-centred offerings in Thailand.
The Bangkok Post interviewed 43 users of co-working spaces to find out who is using them and why .The survey was conducted between 1.30pm and 5pm on Sept 18, and respondents were randomly selected from the pool of customers present at the time of the survey.
Users of co-working spaces are a loyal bunch. Close to 92% of respondents said they never used a co-working space other than the one in which they were interviewed. The most loyal customers were those at Hubba, while the least were those at AIS D.C., where 16% said they used other co-working spaces.
Contrary to expectations, most users don't live near their chosen co-working space. The average user across the three locations surveyed travels 6.36 km (close to six skytrain stations on the Sukhumvit line) to their co-working areas.