The V&A Waterfront’s future-focused and inspirational co-working hub, Workshop17, is marking its fifth anniversary by extending a helping hand to entrepreneurs.
It is said that Workshop17 has become an innovation hub that facilitates talented, passionate and diverse individuals, all learning and working together to create new solutions to big and small problems.
“As we re-emerge from the lockdown, this is a time when a spirit of community is most critical for re-establishing the social and economic fabric of South Africa. We invite entrepreneurs, innovators, professionals and start-ups to all become part of our dynamic community of 50 active organisations, and we will offer the first two months free to anyone who signs up for a 12-month membership,” said Paul Keursten CEO of Workshop17.
By tapping into the V&A’s resources – from property to business and retail expertise, and access to independent experts – Workshop17 offers an environment that fosters cutting-edge ideas, plans, developments and solutions in an innovation hub whose influence and impact extends well beyond its walls.
In 2015, entrepreneurs were invited to become part of the new Workshop17 venture. In the years that followed, the V&A Waterfront not only achieved its social objective, it made a significant economic impact too. Many of the smaller start-up members with only two or three staff at their beginning grew so significantly they eventually had to move into bigger premises to accommodate a staff complement of 40 or more.
Workshop17 was the catalyst for the dramatic redevelopment of the old Blue Shed craft market into what is now the Watershed. The proposal for an innovation hub led to the redesign of the bigger warehouse and the opportunity to broaden the co-sharing project to also support and showcase the best local artisans at the Watershed art and crafts market.
Workshop17 also focused on creating a tech cluster to accelerate the rapid growth of local tech start-ups, and the key areas of education and learning, healthcare and alternative energy.
Workshop17 now houses a coding academy as part of the 50 mostly tech-oriented members. A focus area that has evolved significantly is innovative education through members and partners.
“A key measure of success of initiatives at the V&A Waterfront is growing incomes and jobs through fostering enterprise development and promoting start-ups. Workshop17 creates a fantastic platform for this and we want to see more make use of it.” said David Green, CEO of the V&A Waterfront.
Anyone interested in joining the Workshop17 community can contact organizers over here.