Malaysian co-working space WORQ said on Wednesday that it has secured RM10 million ($2.41 million) in funding from seven follow-on investors, including the regional investment group Phillip Capital, to help capture a fast-growing flexi-office market.
The firm has also secured loan offers from six banks including Affin Bank, it said in a statement on Wednesday.
“WORQ will use the funds to grow its space under management 10-fold to 1 million square feet, helping offices and businesses pivot to more cost-efficient workplace solutions following the COVID-19 pandemic,” it said in a statement.
WORQ was founded by Stephanie Ping, former Axis-REIT’s head of business development, and Andrew Yeow, a former fund manager, and equities analyst at CIMB Principal.
WORQ has been profitable since its inception in March 2017 with three months being the average time it takes to fill up its outlets. In the two years since its last fundraising, WORQ has grown its footprint by seven-fold and revenue by 560%.
“WORQ’s strategy is to offer tailor-made solutions and extreme flexibility to companies. WORQ sells office usage to companies one desk at a time, eliminating the need to rent and fit out an office. WORQ’s Space-On-Demand solutions allow companies to implement a distributed work style. In this new environment, WORQ can sell one desk multiple times and increase efficiency of space usage,” said co-founder Ping.
WORQ plans to go beyond providing office spaces and ultimately aims to induce collaboration by introducing a community workstyle. “A community workstyle is powerful because, at any moment that you need help, or someone to collaborate with, you will find great value in being able to tap into the community,” she said.
WORQ will soon be launching its proprietary community app to create an online-offline experience for its users. “This spawns local communities everywhere, thereby canvassing the globe with productive hyper-localised communities all over the world. Ultimately, WORQ’s vision is to help people prosper by working together,” she added.
With its sustainable model, WORQ said it is able to help turnaround loss-making spaces even in quiet locations. The firm has made an acquisition of another flexible space into its portfolio for this purpose. WORQ is also looking to inorganically expand its portfolio via acquisitions and partnerships with other co-working space operators and landlords, it added.
It was reported in July 2018 that WORQ raised RM10 million ($2.48 million) in a crowdfunding round that included investors Bangsawan Consulting and Phillip Capital. This was the second funding round raised by the co-working space operator.
In February 2017, it had secured RM3.5 million ($786,782) from Malaysia’s Cradle Fund; SMG, an investment holding company co-founded by Jungle Ventures founding partner Anurag Srivastava; 500 Startups through its subsidiary 500 Durians; and other private investors.