WeWork competitor Convene is still growing, and unique spaces like its 5th Ave location in New York prove it offers something different

Convene is a coworking and event space with offices in New York and 5 other cities.

  • With WeWork’s cancelled IPO, some analysts are questioning the coworking business model, but Convene has raised $260 million in equity funding and continues to grow.
  • The 530 Fifth Ave Convene location gives a look into the company’s approach to coworking.

Convene’s 530 Fifth Avenue location is one of 14 in New York, a city with some of the stiffest coworking competition around. WeWork alone has 66 New York locations, and workers looking for other variations might choose The Wing women’s coworking space, or dozens of others.

Analysts have been calling coworking bubble for over a year, and WeWork’s cancelled IPO and reports that it doesn’t even have cash on hand to pay out severance payments might mean they’re right, but Convene is still going strong.

Convene’s head of product, Nick LiVigne, feels confident in the company’s future. So far, it has raised $260 million in funding, including a $152 million Series D round of funding this summer. He emphasized in an interview that Convene has 2 products: workspaces and events, and it will continue to grow focusing on those areas.

The Fifth Ave location spans 4 floors and 116,000 square feet.

 Convene

It has 3 boardrooms that can accommodate up to 20 people each.

Convene

Working and meeting spaces are separated, with a shared gallery space.

Convene

LiVigne told Business Insider that Convene is one of the “lowest density” coworking spaces in NY, so tenants have “room to breath.”

Convene

LiVigne told Business Insider during the tour that companies renting from Convene can have rooms specified to fit their needs, after a consultation to see the options.

Convene

Some tenants want to fit as many desks in as possible, while others prioritize comfortable furniture and don’t want to feel crowded.

 Mary Meisenzahl

According to LiVigne, one of the things that makes Convene stand out in the coworking world is the unique design of the space.

Mary Meisenzahl

The coworking spaces are “not cookiecutter,” according to LiVigne. Each location has a unique theme based on the space and its history. This Convene location’s theme is “Inhabit the frame.”

Mary Meisenzahl

The theme continues throughout the space, even into phone booths.

Mary Meisenzahl

Light fixtures and other details are unique to each building as well, and work to continue the theme.

Mary Meisenzahl

Plants are placed throughout the space for a “natural element,” and all private space is on the window line, so there are no interior suites.

Mary Meisenzahl

WiFi extends to the terrace, so Convene tenants can also work outside.

Mary Meisenzahl

This office has some midcentury elements like a sunken workspace, while the One Liberty Plaza office, for example, is steel themed.

 Mary Meisenzahl

LiVigne said that Convene “takes the friction out of the workday,” with on-site amenities like a primary care provider and workout studio.

Mary Meisenzahl

The Hydra studio brings in trainers to lead classes that tenants can use throughout the day.

 Convene

Workout equipment is available at any time.

Mary Meisenzahl

The women’s locker room next to the workout area was particularly impressive.

Mary Meisenzahl

Blow dryers, hair products, and other offerings actually make it feasible to return to work after a workout. LiVigne said that perks like this work for “busy professionals who barely have time to leave the office.”

 Mary Meisenzahl

The bathroom had massive showers, plus a sauna. LiVigne pointed out that one of the perks of a coworking space is that employees at small companies have access to perks that they oftentimes wouldn’t elsewhere.

Mary Meisenzahl

Each Convene location has a barista and full kitchen with a daily chef special. Meals can be delivered directly to your desk.

Mary Meisenzahl

And of course, there’s kombucha on tap.

Mary Meisenzahl

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Author: Joseph Oladokun

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