Demand for Co-working Spaces is set to rise in Dubai and UAE
Dubai is seeing a high demand for Co-working spaces among entrepreneurs and startups as evident by the existence of many Co-working centers in the Emirate. The Co-working culture is becoming increasingly popular phenomenon in Dubai as it provides small business owners affordable way to gain access to services infrastructure and technology and benefit from the Shared-Economy business model.
Dubai Economy & SME Sector
Small & Medium Enterprises (SMEs) are considered to be the backbone of Dubai economy representing near around 90 per cent of all businesses and contributing nearly 40 per cent towards Dubai’s economy and GDP. An estimated 230,000 SMEs are based across Dubai and UAE with half of them being startups.
Even though the Dubai’s SME sector is growing at a moderate rate, the rising cost of business operations, which includes high rental cost of commercial properties has started to influence many upcoming small businesses to look for cost effective alternatives. This created fresh opportunities for Co-working service providers to accommodate small business owners and as a result, Dubai is now witnessing a massive boom in Co-working culture with Co-working spaces mushrooming all over the Emirate.
Co-working Centers in Dubai
At present, more than 40 Co-working centers operate in Dubai offering various type of Co-working packages to freelancers, small business owners and startup companies. These packages starts from as low as Dh 350 (US$ 100) per month and goes up to Dh 4,500 (US$ 1226) per month depending on the type of services and features that the business owners select (i.e. Workstation or Private Office).
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Co-working Benefits to Small Business Owners
Research findings indicate that Co-working spaces in Dubai play an effective role in reducing the startup costs and generate long term savings of 50 per cent compared to conventional office space. In addition, Co-working spaces provide extremely flexible terms, which includes the ability to scale the up or down in size and renew monthly / daily rental contracts. This makes Co-working spaces particularly attractive to small businesses that are sensitive to long-term contractual obligations.
Future of Co-working in Dubai and UAE
Given the demand and expectations of young entrepreneurs in Dubai who desire more dynamic environment and comfortable lifestyle has made Co-working model extremely growth driven in the emirate. According to experts, cities like Dubai will have significantly more Co-working spaces in future than there is presently. In addition, other cities like Abu Dhabi and Sharjah emulate Dubai by embracing the Co-working culture in years to come.
A recent report by IWG indicates that near around 60 per cent of UAE employees at least work one-day a week from their home or location other than their office. Likewise, in a recently published survey by bayt.com (a UAE based recruiting website) 71 per cent respondents desired for more open and flexible workspaces, which indicates the level of acceptance among working professionals, even from mid-to-large sized organizations toward Co-working culture in UAE.
Co-working Initiatives by Dubai Government
Thanks to the initiatives taken by Dubai government to foster entrepreneurial environment and nurture startups has enabled Co-working culture to flourish in Dubai. In addition to Dubai government’s Co-working centers across Dubai, which includes (JLT, DTEC & TECOM etc.) many private investors have setup Co-working or Business centers across Dubai which includes but not limited to Google partnered Astrolabs (Dubai based Co-working company).
Investment Opportunities in Co-working Segment (Dubai & UAE)
Dubai and UAE have always been an investment friendly destination offering attractive investment environment to international companies that are looking to tap into the Gulf region. The country has also developed world-class infrastructure in the form top quality airports, hotels, public facilities and economic zones, which furthers its evolution as an international business destination.
A robust existing framework in conjunction with business friendly policies ensure sustained economic growth of the country. As a result, Dubai and UAE will see a high demand for Co-working spaces among entrepreneurs and startups in years to come, who are keen to leverage the service infrastructure and technology as a part of Shared-Economy business model.
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