The supply and demand for coworking spaces across Southeast Asia has been increasing rapidly as of late. However, the key driver contributing to this growth may surprise you. It is not entrepreneurs and startups as commonly believed, but corporate users, among whom coworking is fast gaining popularity.
Bangkok has emerged as a popular city for coworking, with JLL observing that operators have trouble finding suitable locations due to the undersupply of prime office space. This explains why the majority of upcoming facilities will be located in prime office developments where construction is not yet fully completed.
“While many corporate users in Bangkok are in an experiment with coworking, our discussions with large occupiers show that more companies have become keen to consider coworking space as an alternative workplace option.” says Yupa Sathienpabayut, Director of Office Leasing at JLL.
Many of the advantages of coworking, including the short contract commitments and individual membership structures, allow companies to quickly accommodate changes in headcount, support mobile workforces and remote-working employees, more efficiently and cost-effectively.
Recent research by JLL indicates that flexible workspaces in Southeast Asia have shown a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of around 40% in the last three years and now make up 2% of total office stock, from less than 1% in 2015.
The growth of flexible work spaces in Southeast Asia follows in the footsteps of the rapid growth in Asia Pacific, where flexible-space stock recorded a CAGR of 35.7% from 2014-17, much higher than in the United States (25.7%) and Europe (21.6%) over the same period.