China is Asia’s new dreamland for startups, and consequently many startup entrepreneurs are embarking on their own tech and innovation journeys here. The very first step of the journey is finding the right work environment, ideally one well-suited for collaboration, innovation, and future opportunities. That’s where co-working space 10SPACE comes in.
In late September, 10SPACE launched its third co-working space in Beijing. China’s capital is a natural choice for 10SPACE’s headquarters given the city’s growing reputation as an innovation center for China’s promising startups and investors. 10SPACE recently announced the rollout of strategic services that include strategizing and executive training with 10X, its associated company, as well as startup-fundraising services with help from 10FUND, the venture capital firm behind the co-working space.
Sarah Wang, Co-Founder and CEO of 10SPACE called the new space her ‘Super Innovation Port’. She said that the space breaks the traditional boundaries of what a co-working space can be, as far as office space rentals go. “It can be a workplace, a gallery, a lounge, and more,” she said. “We are making innovations here. We believe that ‘People make spaces’, and we want to help talents to make their innovations in the space.”
Back in June, 10SPACE opened two co-working spaces focused on media, film, and television in eastern Beijing’s Tongniu Film Industry Park. Each spans 1,200 square meters. By the end of this year, 10SPACE plans to open a total of four work spaces and one activity center with a capacity of 300 guests. It aims to attract top talent among startup founders and investors from around the world.
Perhaps most importantly, 10SPACE has witnessed the innovative and strategic possibilities that they can offer to Chinese enterprises, who of course have a huge demand for these opportunities. They hope to look down the road 10 or 20 years and foresee industry changes — and position themselves accordingly.
Take Chongqing Zongshen Motors for example. As a motorbike manufacturer, Zongshen works with many kinds of suppliers with various payment terms. Wang said that through 10SPACE, Zongshen received help from 10X to reposition itself. It discovered that manufacturing is not their only advantage; in fact, Zongshen’s strategic position allows the company to carry out supply chain finance services such as providing short-term credit that optimizes working capital for both the buyer and the seller. It involves the use of a technology platform automating transactions and tracking invoice approval and settlement processes from initiation to completion.
In part a result of consultation with 10X, Zongshen has set up a separate supply chain finance arm known as Cheyun Financial Services. It is the “Ant Financial” of the car and motorbike industry. This case demonstrates how a Chinese industrial leader has developed a fintech arm to drive profit growth. 10SPACE now plans to launch a high tech and AI startup-focused international co-working space in Beijing, which will continue to help companies like Zongshen select suitable fintech startups in the supply chain finance area, thus bringing in new domestic and international technology to boost its financial arm.
10 SPACE can also facilitate funding opportunities for startups. AI and machine learning have proven to improve efficiency in various industries and are now among the hottest and heavily invested-in sectors. For example, in July, Silicon Valley and Beijing-based AI startup CloudBrain received several millions of dollars (USD) in a Series A round led by 10FUND, the investment arm of 10SPACE. CloudBrain empowers Chinese industrial leaders with AI innovation solutions. For example, UnionPay Smart, China’s dominant card payment network and UnionPay’s affiliated company, has increased efficiency for business owners by allowing them to pinpoint potential customers through the startup’s AI solutions.
Despite fierce competition, 10SPACE will likely continue to find and facilitate the most promising startups.