PropTech Experts Who Are Repurposing Vacant Offices

PropTech Experts Who Are Repurposing Vacant Offices

Get the inspiration you need to revamp your empty office space.

When most people are working from home during (and perhaps after) the pandemic, what can you do with empty offices? At a time when the commercial real estate industry is struggling worldwide, more and more PropTech companies are repurposing vacant office spaces and transforming them for other uses. 

Neighbor

Neighbor was founded in 2017, with a goal to repurpose under-utilized or vacant space— whether it be a person’s basement or the empty floor of an office building—and turn it into storage, allowing people to have a more convenient and accessible alternative to store their personal belongings. Neighbor also partners with commercial realtors to turn their under-utilized retail, multifamily or office space into self-storage space. 

During the COVID pandemic, Neighbor’s business has accelerated because of increased demand. In March this year, Neighbor announced that it had raised US$53 million in a Series B round of funding. In the United States, where the Utah-based company operates, people have been spending more time organizing and cleaning out their homes Marie Kondo-style (minimalist style) and, as a result, are requiring more storage space. 

Silofit

Montreal and Miami-based Silofit turns small, empty office spaces into high-end, private micro-gyms. Fitness trainers and their clients and individual gym-goers can rent the gyms by the hour. The company currently has 20 gyms across Canada, and more than 12,000 users and 3,000 trainers are active on the Silofit app. It aims to open another 50 locations across the United States in the next year and a half, beginning with cities like Miami, Chicago and Boston.

Just like Neighbor, Silofit found its business blooming during the pandemic. It raised US$10.25 million in Series A funding in July this year. Prior to the pandemic, utilization of Silofit’s spaces was about 80 percent trainers and 20 percent individual users. That shifted to a 50/50 split during the pandemic, as more people wanted their own private, sanitary space to work out alone.

SchoolHouse

During the pandemic, New York-based education technology (EdTech) startup SchoolHouse filled the void that shutdown schools left. It raised US$8.1 million in funding in April this year. The company uses empty commercial space for micro-schools and learning pods. Families who sign up for SchoolHouse are matched with a teacher. These micro-classrooms operate just like normal ones, except that the average class sizes are much smaller with only 6 to 10 students per class.

CEO of SchoolHouse, Brian Tobal, wanted to bring forward the idea of a teacher-centered education to the mainstream, and “make the teacher the centerpiece” of a classroom. With this, teachers can tailor existing curriculums to the needs of individual students. 

Flexibility and adaptability are what drive startup companies to success during the pandemic. PropTech companies are not an exception.

Header image courtesy of Unsplash

SHARE THIS STORY

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on email
Sophie M
When she’s not writing for Jumpstart Magazine, Sophie likes to spend her time doom scrolling on Twitter, visiting art galleries and listening to true crime podcasts.

RELATED POSTS

Companies that Might Accept Crypto Payments in 2022

Companies that Might Accept Crypto Payments in 2022

The cryptocurrency industry is growing rapidly, and with that growth comes increased interest from companies looking to accept crypto payments. While there are already a few major companies that accept cryptocurrency payments, like Microsoft and PayPal, many more are considering following suit.

Top 5 Personal Finance Books That You Need to Read

Top 5 Personal Finance Books That You Need to Read

When it comes to financing and budgeting, most of us have to learn everything all by ourselves. From figuring out the right kind of investments to learning how to manage your spending habits, we all need to know more about handling our personal finances.

These Startups Are Reducing the Digital Divide

These Startups Are Reducing the Digital Divide

It is hard to imagine doing anything without the internet today, especially since the world was hit by a pandemic. However, in a world where 37% of the global population has never had access to the internet, the reality of who gets to make the most of the internet is heavily skewed in the favor of the developed world.

Top 3 Most Anticipated VR Headsets of 2022

Top 3 Most Anticipated VR Headsets of 2022

There’s no doubt that virtual reality (VR) is here to stay. In recent years, VR technology has come a long way and shows no signs of slowing down. According to the 2021 report by Grand View Research, the global VR market is anticipated to expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15.0 percent from 2022 to 2030.

Should I Quit My High-Paying Job to Start a Business I Love

Should I Quit My High-Paying Job to Start a Business I Love?

So you’re stuck in a job you hate. It’s dragging you down, making you feel miserable every day. You’ve tried to quit, but it’s not that easy. You need the money, and those golden handcuffs are keeping you tied to your boss. Don’t worry, you’re not alone—many people find themselves in the same situation.

When Love Meets Tech - a Deep-Dive into the Matchmaking Industry

When Love Meets Tech – a Deep-Dive into the Matchmaking Industry

In the digital era, the internet has become a popular spot where people have resorted to finding love. By 2024, it is expected that global online dating services will have 276.9 million users. Whether it’s looking for love, a date or someone to hang out with or talk to, it’s obvious that people are actively seeking connections with other beings.