Franchise’s newest target: the flexible workspace revolution


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In the midst of what many are calling the flexible workspace revolution, franchisees are looking towards the serviced office market for lucrative new opportunities. Projections show that three in ten buildings on every high street could offer a new franchise opportunity, with flexible working, or co-working as it’s often called, emerging as a booming industry.

A booming industry

With businesses and individuals increasingly using flexible working spaces, the co-working industry is estimated to be growing by 24% each year. A recent study of 18,000 business leaders in 96 countries by IWG, the parent company of leading workspace providers including Regus and Spaces, revealed that the majority of business leaders (89%) believe flexible working is helping their businesses to grow and stay competitive. In addition, 80% felt that adopting co-working, and enabling their employees to work anywhere, has helped them recruit and retain top talent.

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Likewise, with a huge 50% of workers predicted to be working remotely for most of their working week, by 2022, forecasts suggest that the global mobile workforce will reach 1.87 billion people. This presents a unique opportunity for those in the franchise industry to jump on what is a rapidly growing trend.

As more people look to work flexibly, the demand for places for them to do so is growing; and as the corporate real estate market continues to grow, global real estate giant JLL estimates that up to 30% of corporate real estate could be flexible workspace by 2030.

The growing franchise opportunity

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This makes the serviced office market one of the most exciting growth markets in the world. Simply put, it is the next franchise frontier. And the industry founder, IWG, with its thirty years of experience in the serviced office market and brands to match every requirement and style, is now offering people a chance to get involved.

In September 2018, the company announced they would be leading the UK’s first serviced office franchise partnership with franchising experts, ACCA Office Ltd. Since then, four more businesses have partnered with IWG, including Kash Office Limited, AMA Workspaces, SME Properties Limited, and Q-Boid Limited. These franchise partnerships will see sites opened across the country over the next couple of years.

IWG is present in almost 3,300 locations, 110 countries and 1,100 town and cities across the world – and it’s this experience that makes IWG the ideal franchise partner for those wanting to take advantage of the booming demand for serviced offices worldwide.

Alan van der Westhuizen, Head of Partnership Growth – South Africa at IWG, said: “Partnering with IWG gives business owners the ability to participate in this growth story and take advantage of the huge demand for flexible, contemporary workspaces – one of the most exciting growth markets in the country.”

“Our years of experience in the industry and our well-established global network has taught us that building a quality flexible workspace offering requires trust and support. We work closely with our franchisees to ensure that they have a framework to find the right location and design, backed by the strength of our operational and marketing support and the 24-hour customer service that IWG is known for.”