WeWork Debuts its First Philippine Location in Uptown Bonifacio as part of Strong Footprint in Southeast Asia

WeWork—a platform for creators that provides the space, community, and services to help people make a life, not just a living—has officially opened its first Philippine location in Uptown Bonifacio Tower Three central to the Bonifacio Global City (BGC) enclave, and promises to make Filipinos love Mondays again. Fortified by strong demand from enterprises, startups to small and MSMEs (micro, small, and medium entrepreneurs) in joining the WeWork community, WeWork will also be expanding its presence to RCBC Plaza in Makati City by Q2 2019.

On the heels of WeWork’s new locations including Ho Chi Minh and Kuala Lumpur that opened in late 2018, WeWork’s first community in the country is a milestone set to pave the way for revolutionizing the way Filipinos view work. Accommodating over 800 members across the 9th and 10th floor of the Uptown Bonifacio Tower Three Building, this will strengthen WeWork’s Southeast Asia total reach to more than 13,000 members in its regional community.

Testament to its local commitment in further accelerating the future of work in the dynamic Filipino market, WeWork Uptown Bonifacio also boasts thoughtfully curated elements such as a games and karaoke room and an indoor garden area amongst its signature features, where freelancers, startups, MSMEs, and enterprises on the lookout for enhancing their work environment and elevating their businesses to the next stage, will be further empowered by its global network.

“With Philippines a rising economy in Southeast Asia, there is no better time to be here than now. WeWork is not just about the space, but also the value that we create by providing an inclusive member-driven experience that fosters an environment of creativity and collaboration across a vibrant global community of individuals. As our footprint continues to grow in Manila,  we are committed to helping Philippine-based enterprises, freelancers, startups, and MSMEs by harnessing the power of WeWork’s global network and community. We look forward to fostering greater cross-border collaborations and ideation that will spur business growth in the region,” said Turochas “T” Fuad, Managing Director, WeWork Southeast Asia.

WeWork’s “global company, “local playbook” approach

Grounded by its core mission of creating opportunities for community and collaboration through optimizing space with good design, WeWork has since expanded its footprint worldwide with 425 physical locations in 100 cities in 27 countries. Driven by its expansions in 2018, its Southeast Asia stronghold has seen its footprint grow to 17 locations in total through new locations in Singapore, and new markets such as Indonesia (Jakarta), Vietnam (Ho Chi Minh), Malaysia (Kuala Lumpur) and Thailand (Bangkok).

The company’s growth has always been driven by the mantra, “global company, local playbook”, which marries its proven expertise around the world with a local approach to space design and member experience. Dedicated to its local commitment in Philippines through close collaborations with key partners and experts in creating a unique WeWork Philippines experience, this is most visible in WeWork’s effort to incorporate Filipino elements in its BGC site, through the use of art.

 With the WeWork Uptown Bonifacio space based on the ideals of fresh air and mobility, two aspects that are brought to life through the spaces’ ample natural light and various open-air meeting places. Highlights unique to location consists of a Karaoke and Games room; along with an Indoor Garden on the 10th floor that provides ample space for contemplation and relaxation. Overlooking other towers in BGC, the Indoor Garden is also inspired by the Philippine Islands, where artificial turf mounds with planters and swings cover the length of the corridor, while also showcasing the vivid mural by Bitto as well.

 One of the focal points in WeWork’s space in Uptown Bonifacio is the mural in the main common area on the 9th Floor. A collaboration by WeWork’s arts & graphics team and a Filipino artist, Bitto, the mural puts the spotlight on the Filipino tradition of “bayanihan” or mutual assistance; which embodies the spirit of civic unity and cooperation among Filipinos, and is also a value championed by WeWork through its deep belief in collaboration. Amongst artwork with local inspiration, there is also a neon sign on the 10th floor inspired by Filipino icon Manny Pacquiao that celebrates the locals’ love for boxing and another sign that’s inspired by Halo Halo, a popular Filipino iced dessert.

 Maintaining a rhythm unique to the space that exudes a Philippine tropical vibe, natural light for warmth, as well as planters for a healthy dose of greenery are also complemented to bring the space to life. With the space integrating a mostly neutral palette, deliberate use of color pops such as through the mint-colored ceiling feature and mural are complemented for the space to stand out.

 Fuad comments, “Apart from creating habitats for creativity and focus, our goal is to shape truly dynamic environments that aim to create better experiences where our our members are inspired to go to work everyday. By transforming spaces into beautiful multipurpose and responsive environments that function like an office, but feel like a home for our members, we are very much rooted in our values that demonstrates how every design element and corner in WeWork was considered with the member in mind.”

Unrivalled matched access to a global network empowered by an inclusive community

WeWork bridges the gap between physical spaces and digital platforms by utilizing software and data to ensure our spaces are designed and built efficiently and that our communities are connected, productive and, ultimately, happy.

Our rapid growth has also driven by our technology - the majority of which has been built in-house - which spans R&D, construction, real estate and design, as well as community experiences. Through our WeWork Members Network App, we are connecting members using our in-house, mobile technology – allowing them to extract maximum value from the WeWork ecosystem where our members can connect seamlessly with the community and to manage their workspace experience.

With the WeWork app a tool that enables members to tap into the entire community of creators & entrepreneurs, members can easily book meeting rooms, invite other members to events, and get access to like-minded individuals or companies from WeWork’s global membership; making it convenient for any member to promote his or her service to an international market or engage in cross-border collaborations.

With this an unparallelled edge in the industry, WeWork has also taken this a step further by taking these insights and our expertise from sourcing, designing, building and operating high-performance workspaces and developed an offering that applies our data-driven approach to enterprises’ owned or leased spaces that provides for enterprise members: Powered by We. Today, Powered by We—our full-service strategy, real estate, and technology offering—has become one of our fastest-growing business lines, as enterprises like UBS, Sprint, and Standard Chartered Hong Kong turn to WeWork to deliver optimal workplace experiences for their employees around the world.

WeWork welcomes members ranging from global enterprises to organizations with a presence in Manila such as education technology enterprise Edukasyon.ph, activities booking platform Klook, and cashback reward startup Shopback.

“We were looking for an efficient and productive working space that would enable us to continuously optimize, innovate and up our game, so WeWork became a natural fit for us. Our team thrives in this collaborative environment, and we are confident that WeWork’s global network and resources will enable us to progress even faster towards our goals,” said Judge Calimbahin, Chief of Strategy, Edukasyon.

“At the core of Klook, we embrace the power of community as a firm foundation of our exponential business growth. With Klook also a member in Seoul and Japan, partnering with WeWork gives us the flexibility and peace of mind to be dynamic with our growth, without worrying about real estate needs and costs,” said Michelle Cruz, Market Lead, Klook Philippines.

Seamlessly and effectively bringing all these aspects together to create a remarkable member experience is at the heart of WeWork, and Fuad says that they’re just at the start of their Philippines journey. “The Philippines is a now a major growth center in the region and we are amazed by how much creative and entrepreneurial potential there is here. We are keen on helping propel individuals and companies towards growth through our workspaces,” Fuad remarks.

Evolving space into experience and deepening partnerships with landlords

With WeWork leading the world in thinking about the interaction of space, people and technology together, its new Manila location is testament to building the heart and soul of the local community. Along with expanding our physical footprint around the world, there has also been increasing demand from landlords through participating leases that enable them to share in the growth and upside on a global level.

Achieving great success with participating leases with landlords such as Daman Land (Malaysia), Sinar Mas Land (Indonesia), Fung Group (Shanghai) amongst others, WeWork is creating value by helping to revitalize buildings and neighborhoods, attract new tenants and create greater value.

Research by the leading real estate consultancy HR&A showed that WeWork can help generate as much as 29 percent in rent premiums for building owners, where in select buildings that sold after WeWork moved in, there was a 50-120 percent increase in sale price. Leveraging on its brand value, global footprint and member base, WeWork looks forward to partnering with landlords in navigating market complexities with our expertise in Philippines and beyond.

“As WeWork strengthens its presence in Southeast Asia, whether it’s work, living, education, wellness, or retail – we can reimagine, reshape, and re-humanize the architecture of our space, our buildings, and our cities to support and encourage human connection and creativity,” Fuad concludes.  

JL Santiago Aquino

A millennial lifestyle blogger from Caloocan City who adores trying new things. ✨ Email: blog.ph7@gmail.com. Follow @JayL_Aquino on Instagram, Twitter, TikTok & Facebook.

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