Spacepool: Eugene Tavyev
Spacepool is an online search platform connecting businesses looking for office space with available sites
Name of founders: Eugene Tavyev
Date launched: November 2019
Number of employees: 9
Age of founders: 32
Which university, if any, did you attend? Loughborough University
Spacepool aims to streamline the process of finding office space, by allowing businesses to contact workspace providers directly via an online search platform. Founder Eugene Tavyev discusses how Spacepool works and why it was launched.
Tell us what your business does:
Spacepool is essentially an online search platform aimed at helping firms find the perfect office space. The platform enables businesses to access and directly engage with workspace providers. In turn, streamlining the office space search and rental process, as well as eliminating extra charges, and securing a space that serves their needs at the right pace and budget.
All workspace providers, known as hosts, undergo a thorough validation process to ensure they’re compliant with Spacepool’s policy and values.
Hire requests are submitted directly through Spacepool, which provides a dedicated messaging service for businesses to connect with the hosts. The platform also has a built-in payment functionality, which means everything – from finding a space to paying rent – can be done on the same website, helping time-poor companies optimise their processes and focus on their strategic objectives.
Spacepool is free to use for businesses, with rental rates set by the hosts. Hosts also become a member of a platform which is promoting their brand, their values and ultimately the breadth of choice businesses actually have to find a home.
Where did the idea of your business come from?
Having worked on developing flexible offices for a commercial developer in London, I realised there was a gap in the flexible workspace market. Just as we book accommodation or hire a car, I couldn’t find anything online which enabled me to rent office space quickly in a few clicks of a button.
How did you know there was a market for it?
I took the time to research the market and also dipped my toe in some mystery shopping! It was clear that the existing model is not effective. By going through an agent, there was confusion, misunderstandings, a lack of transparency, and ultimately delays in finding the right space.
What were you doing before starting up?
I was working as a business analyst for a large, international commercial property developer.
Have you always wanted to run your own business?
I guess I've just been born this way. I always knew I would start my own business eventually. Even when I was seven years of age, I was looking for ways to make pocket money. This even resulted in me exploring the trading of pets at the local market!
How did you raise the money?
I have invested a lot of my own savings into the business because I believe in what I have created. I am also fortunate to have the backing of private investors who share my beliefs in the success of this platform, which has the power to disrupt and revolutionise the way business secure office space.
Describe your business model and how you make money.
Spacepool charges office providers (so in other words, our hosts) a 10% commission fee on transaction. The service is free for tenants.
What challenges have you faced and how have you overcome them?
Patience has been the biggest challenge for me, personally. Building an online flexible office marketplace is an incredibly challenging exercise that brings a lot of complexity. Sometimes, you can get lost and struggle to see the wood for the trees. The only way to overcome it has been to keep seeing the bigger picture.
What was your first big breakthrough?
We have celebrated some great milestones through the course of our young journey but registering our first host was special. It validated all the work we have done to date and proved to us that the platform has a bright future.
What advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?
Oscar Isaacs as Abel Morales in A Most Violent Year said: “When it feels scary to jump, that is exactly when you jump. Otherwise, you end up staying in the same place your entire life.” And I couldn't agree more.
Where do you want to be in five years’ time?
I'd like to see Spacepool become the go-to online hub for businesses and entrepreneurs to find offices.
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