Belgian start-up conquers co-working spaces throughout Europe

Belgian start-up conquers co-working spaces throughout Europe

ZapfloorHQ raises 1 million euros for managing smart shared offices

Co-working spaces have been popping up like mushrooms these days. ZapFloorHQ capitalises on the trend with a digital platform that not only takes over the entire administration of office buildings that host multiple businesses but also helps transform them into genuine communities. The start-up has now raised 1 million euros to further revolutionise the way offices are managed in Europe and the rest of the world.

The number of co-working spaces worldwide has grown with an annual average of 15 percent since 2013. According to Instant Offices, today there are more than 32.000 co-working offices worldwide.  The same goes for Belgium where new co-working spaces open their doors on a regular basis around the country. They are the ideal home base for freelancers and budding businesses that are not yet able or willing to invest in their own office. However, co-working spaces are also starting to attract larger, more established companies seeking to set up a satellite office. And corporates, inspired by the popularity of co-working spaces, are also starting to organise their own work floors according to the same principles.

The Antwerp start-up, ZapFloorHQ has developed a platform for multi-user office buildings, taking care of the back-end administration for building managers while also enabling the occupants themselves to access the SaaS platform. The latter can connect, for instance, to book a meeting room, report issues to the building manager or simply communicate with fellow members of the co-working community. And because every co-working space is unique, ZapfloorHQ’s software enables each community to create its own fully customised platform and integrate it with other hardware and software that makes the office as smart as possible.

Growing team and further internationalisation 

The first Belgian co-working space began using ZapFloorHQ in 2017. The startup, which is part of the Start it @KBC community, later launched itself on the international scene. Since then, co-working spaces, business centres and companies in more than eight countries make use of the platform. ZapFloorHQ recently completed a capital round in which the LeanSquare investment fund (part of the Noshaq group) and Stefan Grosjean (founder and CEO of the smart energy meter, Smappee) invested a combined 1 million euros.

“This investment is further confirmation of the quality of our services,” said Thomas Celen, co-founder and CEO of ZapFloorHQ. “We believe that managing a workspace is more than just managing an office. ZapfloorHQ turns shared offices into a streamlined, operational whole. Thus saving time for community managers, which they can then devote to growing a truly inspiring community. This finance will allow us to expand both our team and our international focus; so we can offer our platform to more business centres and co-working spaces in Europe and the rest of the world.”

“Shared offices are gaining in popularity and ZapfloorHQ has succeeded in securing a place in that landscape within a very short space of time,” José Zurstrassen, Chairman of LeanSquare explains. “By automating a large number of services and simplifying the daily administration, the digital platform enables co-working spaces to concentrate fully on welcoming users to the community. We are therefore convinced that ZapfloorHQ will be an important player in this rapidly growing market.”

Co-founder and CTO, Wouter Schoofs emphasises that ZapfloorHQ would never have been able to grow as quickly as it has without feedback from its clients: “They have made an active contribution from day one. As a result, we have been able to build the kind of platform that the market truly needs.”

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Thomas Celen co-founder & CEO, ZapFloorHQ
About Start it @KBC

Start it @KBC supports and promotes entrepreneurs with innovative ideas and scalable business models. As such, it is Belgium’s largest community of start-ups. As a pioneer in Belgium, Start it @KBC aims to have a positive impact on the country’s economy and society. 

For their first 3 months at Start it @KBC, start-ups join a strong, tailor-made accelerator programme while continuing to profit from top-notch mentorship, diverse expertise, an extensive international network and an inspiring co-working space for a period of 12 months. Start it @KBC continuously adapts its programme in co-creation with its start-ups.  

One of Start it @KBC’s key objectives is to stimulate (international) cross-pollination between more than 700 start-ups and scale-ups but also amongst investors, experienced mentors, experts from a wide variety of domains (technology, sales, legal, marketing, communication, etc.) and other global accelerators and incubators. The community also plays a leading role in promoting diversity and female entrepreneurship. 

Start it @KBC also has a clear international vision. In addition to hubs in Antwerp, Brussels, Ghent, Hasselt, Leuven, Kortrijk and Budapest, the community also includes a presence in New York. As of 2017, Start it @KBC has been a member of the Global Accelerator Network (GAN), a select network of 120 global accelerator programmes, offering extra opportunities for start-ups on the international stage and up to 1 million dollars’ worth of exclusive advantages from technology partners.

Via the Start it @KBC’s Corporate Incubation Program, start-up teams within large companies have also been able to transform innovative ideas into fully-fledged businesses under the guidance of Start it @KBC. 

Start it @KBC was established in 2014. Today it is a partnership between AccentureCronos GroepFlanders DCimecjoynKBCMobile VikingsPfizerTelenet Kickstart, University of Antwerp and local academic partners. 

Start-ups can apply throughout the year via the website (www.startit.be). The selected founders pitch for a professional jury twice a year, and a new group of start-ups start their entrepreneurial trajectory.

For more information: www.startit.be
For Start it @KBC logos and images: startitkbc.prezly.com/media
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