“Out of desperation, innovation is born.”
It would make a great story if ThincSavannah was born from the same noble concept, but in reality, it is only half true. In 2009, the desperation was there as the economy had fallen precipitously from its peak, businesses were laying off employees, and the commercial real estate market had come to a standstill. It sure seemed like the right time to open up an unproven business concept in a tired downtown space that had been vacant for over two years, right?
Well, that is what happened, but we can’t take credit for inventing the concept of coworking.
When we first toyed with the idea of ThincSavannah, we wanted to create a professional environment where people could get work done, network, and enjoy the social interaction that you could not get from a home office or coffee shop. It was going to be a place where the professional people of Savannah wanted to be, and more importantly, were wanted. So, as we did our due diligence on the project, we discovered that we were talking about “coworking”, and it already existed! It was instant justification for us to move forward, and so we did.
After a few months of blood, sweat and tears, and a ton of help from our supporters, we finally opened our doors in April of 2010 with a Grand Opening party. “Coworking” was still very new to Savannah, but the concept resonated with people. Fortunately for us, this meant a growing membership base and slew of awesome events that helped shape the image of our coworking space. So for the next year, we worked out the kinks, spread the word about “Thinc” and found ourselves in an unexpected position.
“Do you have any more private offices?” was the question we were asked most often as we filled all seven ThincOffices. We knew that coworking was supposed to be people working next to each other in an open room to help promote collaboration and social interaction, but our most popular membership was the private offices. Were we just another executive suite business like Regus? What we realized was that our members enjoyed a little privacy once in awhile, but it did not stop them from interacting with the community. In fact, our longest tenured members are predominantly office members who market Thinc better than we ever could. As a result, in January of 2012, we ended up taking over the entire third floor of 8,100 square feet and began our expansion of five more ThincOffices, five ThincStations and another collaborative space that we call ThincStudio. Our “Expandemonium” party was a success, and it only solidified our belief that the greatest asset of ThincSavannah is the community.
So, after a little over two years, we look forward to challenging and stretching the limits of coworking, but in the end, we always remind ourselves of our simple mission- provide a place for Savannah’s professionals to thrive. Thanks to everyone who made this happen, and we hope to see you at Thinc soon!
Ashley Bowersox and Tom Shimada