Catalyst Coworking Space is Gaining Steam
Catalyst, a downtown-Orlando coworking space, is beginning to land more and more members
becoming one of Orlando’s hottest new workplaces. Since opening in April Catalyst has been working to fill their office with professionals from all industries.
There are currently 57 members working out of Catalyst, comprising 38 companies. According to Shakirra Meghee, Catalyst’s Community Manager, 6 new members joined in July, and another 16 in August.
You may already be familiar with Canvs, another coworking space in downtown Orlando. While the two spaces are very similar in what they offer their members, Canvs is more focused on attracting startups, whereas Catalyst is more focused on attracting freelancers and creatives.
Both coworking spaces offer businesses an infrastructure at membership rate, and provide workers with a comfortable, open office. While it’s easy to get lost in the amenities that coworking spaces that Canvs and Catalsyt offer (i.e. coffee bar, kitchen, etc.) the most valuable amenity is the network of professionals you share an office with. “Coworking spaces are another form of asset utilization,” said Jonathan Taylor after announcing the Canvs expansion space in Winter Park.
Meghee believes that the reason for Catalyst sudden and sharp increase in memberships is mostly due to a network multiplier effect. As members begin to fill a coworking space, an increased amount of members will join. Once the space feels and looks alive, prospective members are more inclined to actually join. The hardest part in launching a coworking space seems to be landing initial members.
“The point of a coworking space is that you don’t want to work alone,” said Meghee. Meghee believes that Catalyst is becoming, “a hub not only for career growth, but also personal growth.”
Going forward the space’s focus is “sales, sales, sales.” Catalyst is not at capacity yet, but it does boast a diverse member network. Therewolf, a social experience application startup, calls Catalyst home, along with medical technology company, PN Medical. The space also hosts several freelance designers, an advertising agency, and accounting group, and Tropo, a Cisco-owned cloud API messaging startup. One of Catalyst’s bigger companies, Tropo has two offices in the space, with ten employees.
VentureScaleUp, a small business accelerator, is run out of Catalyst. The VentureScaleUp pilot program, launched in mid-August, combines mentorship and entrepreneurial know-how to seven high-growth potential startups.