IWG, the world’s leading flexible workspace provider, has launched a new franchise scheme in Romania. The new programme allows Romanian franchise operators to enter the booming workspace industry for the first time ever, and in turn help IWG expand its global network.
Flexible workspace, sometimes known as coworking, has become a high-growth industry in recent years. The term refers to office space, meeting rooms and coworking areas that can be rented by individual workers or companies for a temporary period of time, from one hour to several years.
The industry is estimated to be growing by 24 percent each year. By 2020, 50 percent of all workers will be remote most of the time. In 2022, the global mobile workforce will be 1.87 billion people. This is why global real estate giant JLL estimates that up to 30 percent of corporate real estate could be flexible workspace by 2030.
“Three in ten buildings on every high street around the world could offer a new franchise opportunity in the coming years. The serviced office market is one of the most exciting growth markets in the world, and the next frontier for franchise operators. We are excited to partner with new franchise operators to bring the many benefits of flexible working to more people and businesses across Romania,” said Arpad Szanto, Network Development Director SEE.
According to a recent IWG study, approximately 60 percent of Romanian employees work remotely at least a day a week and over 80 percent of companies consider that a flexible workspace would have a direct impact on business growth (91 percent), profit maximization and ongoing competitiveness (87 percent), that it would offer them the possibility to extend their business to new markets, to recruit and retain talent within the organization (84 percent). A number of 200 respondents from Romania participated in the study, employers and employees alike.
A new franchise opportunity with great returns
IWG has been running successful workspaces for over thirty years, ever since it founded the industry in 1989. It has developed its business model through many economic cycles. Its operating model is proven, demonstrably successful and can provide partners with a highly attractive return on their investment. With brands like Regus and Spaces, IWG is the global operator of leading workspace providers with a network of over 3,300 centers in more than 1,100 cities and 120 countries. IWG now wants to accelerate its global growth with franchise partners worldwide.
“Imagine being given the chance to work with previously successful franchise industries such as restaurants or gyms at the beginning of their growth explosions. A similar or even larger opportunity awaits in the serviced office market. It’s an opportunity to diversify away from traditional franchise industries, and benefit from strong cash returns and significant returns on investment,” added Arpad Szanto.
As part of its new programme, IWG offers comprehensive infrastructure to support franchisees throughout the lifecycle of their investment. The global IWG franchise team works closely with its franchisees to ensure they have a framework to find the right location and design; are able to grow their market footprint backed by world-class operational and marketing support; and have the quality customer service IWG is known for.
“Our offer is based on the concept of cluster franchising system, which means that the franchisee who wants to develop the business of serviced offices market is assigned a certain regional area. Right now our focus is with the big cities. The franchisee should also take into consideration that each location has standards like a minimum of 1000 sqm, is situated in A class area of the city and includes over 130 work stations,” Szanto also stated.