As a wake up call for both industry and workplaces, COVID-19 changed the way we think, work and live almost overnight. Businesses throughout the world had to change their strategies, or risk losing years of hard work in a matter of weeks. And the story was no different for the team here at Spacecubed.
With the first half of the financial year reaching new highs, including the launch of our new platform, allowing members to have more ways to connect than ever before, the commencement of our partnership with Murdoch University to activate a whole new community in the CBD and to top it off, we were excited to be listed as one of the Financial Times High Growth companies across Asia for 2020.
Wins continued into the New Year, which can be read about in the full report here, before the pandemic hit throughout the world and major changes were implemented overnight. As a team, and a business, we quickly realised that we had to take the leadership in supporting our members and other small and medium sized businesses who needed assistance during this time. In this, our response had to consider the health and economic wellbeing of our community equally.
We’re delighted to report that by moving quickly and adapting to suit our members most immediate needs, we were able to offer each of our members a rent holiday before the State or Commonwealth government had put their SME support plan in place.
Through the rent holidays, and the quick adaptation of remote working, we learnt now more than ever, the importance of community and social interaction. To combat this, we offered more wellness focussed programs online to support our members and this approach helped us retain and grow goodwill with our community. By the end of June 2020, 68% of our members were back in our spaces!
In addition to rent holidays, wellness programs and online support for our immediate community, we spearheaded the #AdaptDontStop campaign in partnership with Plus Eight and also developed regional programs such as Your Business, Digital to enable smaller businesses to undertake a now-urgent transition to the digital economy and business operation.
But it wasn’t just new programs that took the forefront of the changes at Spacecubed, we quickly reshaped all our existing programs (Plus Eight, She Codes and Meshpoints) to be delivered through a virtual format. But we didn’t just offer those programs via Zoom. Instead, we retained the personal touches that ensured the meaningful connections of our program participants were maintained - a strategy that we now call the ‘cupcake effect’. We have taken this approach to the delivery of all our programs, to great success.
However, with the challenges we faced in light of COVID-19, it wasn’t all doom and gloom. Over the course of this financial year, we also expanded the delivery of our Programs and our flagship programs, She Codes and Plus Eight, are now being delivered across regional WA, South Australia and Queensland.
As mentioned above, we launched our first partner space with Murdoch University in the Perth CBD in September 2019 and through this partnership project, we have successfully showcased one of our approaches to Spacecubed’s Space as a Service (SaaS) model.
Managing Yhub in Yanchep and Make Place in Mandurah also enabled us to test this SaaS model in regional and peri-urban settings, to what has been an exciting and interesting development of new communities. We have been working on this SaaS model for the past 18 months and the launch of Fern, in partnership with Mirvac in September 2020 was the second use-case of the Spacecubed SaaS model.
Overall, we’re proud of the way our team, both immediate staff members and local stakeholders adapted to the challenges we were presented, and were able to not just succeed during this time, but to find new ways to scale our offerings.
Lastly, we’d like to thank you - our members and wider community - without who this all wouldn’t be possible. Now, as we begin to see the light at the end of the tunnel here in WA, we're looking forward to what's next and are excited to continue supporting businesses, change-makers and entrepreneurs now, and into the future of work.
To download Spacecubed’s full 2019-2020 Annual Report, please click here. Or, to find out new ways you can partner with us, become a member, or support our growing startup ecosystem in WA, reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org to get started.