We've been feeling it for a few months, it's been bubbling up on the coworking market in France. As the first actors of this movement, we were looking forward to it and we have to face the facts: the time is now! Several studies confirm a trend that we see every day on the platform and with our clients. Here is a review of a study published by Le Figaro and Cushman Wakefield, as the Salon de l'Immobilier d'Entreprise opens today. The sector could find itself overwhelmed by this new groundswell.
The explosion of the trend as seen by real estate: transactions multiplied by 20
Firstly, a study by Cushman & Wakefield, relayed by Le Figaro in Infographie, confirms that this trend is far from being a fad. According to the real estate specialist, between 2014 and 2017, transactions increased 20-fold: (+600% between 2014 and 2015, +100% between 2015 and 2016 and +86% between 2016 and 2017). There has therefore been a relative slowdown, which can be explained by the fact that the market was initially extremely small.
In total, the study includes about 700 coworking spaces in France, which more or less corresponds to what we find on the platform. Paris remains at the head of the pack, but the province is not lagging behind and there are still many growth opportunities to be seized in these sectors.
The study highlights the fact that WeWork, an American giant, has acted as a catalyst and accelerator in shaking up the traditional real estate players in France. It is difficult to know exactly the impact of the arrival of the unicorn. At about the same time, we had noticed a consolidation of the various major players (Nextdoor, Wellio, Blue Office, Multiburo, Regus / Spaces). However, they did not wait for WeWork to see that the market was driven by fundamental trends: companies' need for more flexibility in property management, new expectations of employees for mobility solutions and alternative workspaces.
Increasingly larger spaces
One of the things we are aligned with is that the size (and quality) of spaces is increasing dramatically. The competition is open to win the title of the largest space in Europe, with WeWork and Spaces in the lead. It is difficult to know exactly what the overall capacity of the offer is in terms of m2 or number of posts, but it is clear that the average size of the spaces has been strongly pulled upwards with the acceleration of the trend. This can be explained in particular by the arrival of industrial players and by the fact that a certain "critical mass" must be reached in order to amortise the fixed costs of a space and reach a sufficient break-even point.
How far will coworking go?
It's hard to say today, as the acceleration is so strong. All the more so as we are seeing a high rate of saturation of coworking areas, particularly in urban centres. Proof that the market still has depth. Market players can count on large companies to come and improve the outlook. They are the ones who - if they invest massively in these new flexible solutions - constitute the greatest reserve for growth.
Read the full article on the Figaro website