The way Hami Arrington puts it, she has been waiting months for WeWork to announce it was coming to Houston.
“I had worked out of my home for about 10 years, and was over it,” says Arrington, cofounder of the innovative digital marketing firm One Foot Over. “And I was over working out of coffee shops. I realized that what I was missing was the sense of community.”
Her cofounder Stephen May felt the same way when they launched the company less than a year ago. He had always worked in the corporate world, so working from home made him feel a little isolated. The day after they heard WeWork was opening its first location in Houston, they signed on the dotted line.
WeWork Houston Galleria opened its doors on December 1, but it won’t be the only Houston location for long. WeWork 708 Main, located in Downtown Houston’s century-old Great Jones Building, is set to open this Spring.
So what is this WeWork that everyone keeps talking about anyway?
An easy answer would be to call it a coworking company. But to the more than 170,000 current WeWork members, it’s a valuable global network of workspaces, designed to foster creativity and collaboration. With a mission grounded in encouraging members to “make a life, not just a living,” WeWork offers modern offices, opportunities to network with other professionals, and connections with potential customers all over the world. It has everything a business needs to succeed, from month-to-month leases to flexible spaces that can grow along with you.
May says they knew from the first day that they made the right decision.
“It’s the energy of the companies that work here that make it so special,” says May. “There’s an excitement about walking into the space.”
Create Your Life’s Work
Outside of it’s beautifully designed interiors and inspiring catalogue of catch phrases, WeWork also strives to support innovative projects and the people behind them. With that mindset, CEO and co-founder, Adam Neumann decided to start an international pitch competition series called the Creator Awards.
When Hurricane Harvey hit Houston, Samantha Snabe knew that her company would be affected. All the components that Re:3D uses to construct its three-dimensional printers could not reach the assembly line. But Re:3D, based in Houston and Austin, had just won big at their local Creator Awards, taking home a $180,000 in funding. Those winnings were what helped keep the lights on during Harvey’s aftermath.
“When you’re a startup, something like this could bankrupt you,” says Snabe. “Our company could have died, but because of WeWork we flourished.”
It wasn’t the only crisis they weathered. After the company established a base in Puerto Rico, the island suffered a one-two punch from two hurricanes, Irma and Maria. Because of those Creator Awards earnings, they were able to continue their work in the community.
Noting the work Re:3D is doing to change the world, Samantha was invited back to the Creator Award stage once again to pitch to a new round of judges during the Creator Awards Global Finals held at Madison Square Garden in New York, last month. Her vision for a waste free world wowed the panel of judges and this tiny Texas start up was awarded the grand prize of $1 million.
When we won at the Creator Awards, it completely changed our trajectory,” says Snabe. “And winning at the finals — there’s just no end to what we can do.”
Do What You Love
WeWork believes in the power of you, whether you’re an entrepreneur starting out, a CEO of a successful mid market company, or a hustling freelancer. At WeWork, you will be inspired to do what you love everyday. For more information about WeWork’s Houston offices, click here. Or book a tour by calling 877-796-2434.