New startup to build capacity in South Australia

Monday 20 July 2015
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Over the past two days, Startup Weekend Adelaide #6 has seen six entrepreneurs gather together to solve the problem of empty office spaces in Adelaide and drive economic growth. What they have built is the beginning of a global company set to build capacity in local communities worldwide.

Any Space Global styles itself as "office space for the sharing economy". It allows people with under-utilised office space to list it for short-notice rental. And it allows freelancers, entrepreneurs, business owners, remote workers, and companies in small spaces to hire meeting rooms, board rooms, desks - and other types of space - at short notice for small fees.

Founded by local entrepreneurs who have worked with National Australia Bank, BHP Billiton, Australian Industry Group, KPMG, ANZ, National Native Title Tribunal, SA Health, SA Water, DPTI, and Coles Supermarkets, Any Space Global has gained traction in a short space of time.

Any Space Global has already secured in-principle agreement with partners including Adelaide City Council, the Polaris Centre, Marion City Council, the Australian Council for Education and Training, and Regional Development Australia (Barossa). The startup is also in early stage negotiations with the Office of Digital Government.

"Any Space is such an important startup," says founder Leticia Mooney. "At March this year there were 42 full floors vacant just in the CBD of Adelaide. But what people forget is that there are under-utilised spaces in regional Australia too. What we didn’t expect was the speed of uptake and the sheer appetite for the service: In both public and private sectors."

Co-founder Jenny Vandyke, author of The Innovation Recipe, has recently relocated to Adelaide from Melbourne. ‘I believe there has never been a better time to start a new business in Adelaide," Vandyke said. "That might sound crazy given some of the economic challenges we face, but since relocating from Melbourne I have been blown away by the appetite for innovation and entrepreneurship in the state. There are so many ways in which South Australia is punching above its weight and doing things that I’m not seeing on the east coast. This is one of them."

Any Space Global has winning Startup Weekend Adelaide in its sights this year - but comments that winning is not the point.

"Winning for us is creating a tool that will drive sustainability in under-utilised space, and reactivates corporate space in communities across the world," said Mooney. "Whether or not we place at Startup Weekend is just the icing on the cake."