With the mushrooming co-working spaces in China starting in 2015, there are so many decent co-working spaces in Shanghai to choose from. To help you ease the pain of visiting every single place to compare, we visited 7 co-working spaces in Shanghai.
1. People Squared [Added on Feb 22, 2017]
Coffee: Manner coffee available at 15 ~ 20 RMB. Members get 5 RMB discount
Price: Dedicated desk starting from 1,700 RMB a month
Location: 16 offices in Shanghai, 3 offices in Beijing, 1 office in Ningbo
Good for: People who want to grow their startup in China or a maker looking for 3D printer and laser cutter
People Squared is the first co-working space in China started in 2008 by Bob Zheng. It first served as a startup office for himself and his friend’s and only later developed into a business by word of mouth. People Squared in Yuyuan East road is home to Chinaccelerator and maker space Xinchejian (新车间). You can meet early-stage startups and expat founders in Shanghai hustling to scale up their business go to Chinaaccelerator and find cool hardware born out of Xinchejian, and even join their free open session on Wednesday night. Electric skateboard startup Stary’s‘s first skateboards were also assembled in Xinchejian. As the pioneer of co-working spaces in China, it is now getting ready to launch dedicated co-working space for artists and content writers.
Coffee: Unlimited access to Seesaw coffee, tea, as well as Qingdao and Boxing Cat beer
Price: Dedicated desk starting from 2,200 RMB a month to 3,200 RMB a month. Private office starting from 2,800 ~ 3790 RMB a month
Location: 5 offices in Shanghai
Good for: People who go on a lot of business trips abroad or love moving around the world
WeWork has more than 100 spaces in 14 countries in the world, and it has a base in Shanghai and Beijing, in China. WeWork claims it is running a community business rather than a co-working space business and brings in resources to help collaboration between members. Their Weihailu office is the biggest co-working space, which includes 3-stories and an open space in the middle. WeWork is the only foreign company in this co-working spaces list, that started from U.S. and later expanded to China. WeWork was founded in New York in 2010 by Adam Neumann and Miguel McKelvey. WeWork will open two spaces in Beijing in April and will add three more spaces in Shanghai starting from April.
Coffee: A cafe is located in the co-working space, but does not offer discounts to its members.
Price: 1,200 ~ 2,000 RMB a month for hot seats
Location: 8 offices in Shanghai
Good for: People who are okay with speaking Chinese, looking for investment and hands-on support for your startup.
We+ has established a 300 million yuan-sized fund to invest in promising teams and has partnered with venture capital firms in Shanghai, such as Gobi Partners, Cathay Capital, and Lightspeed China Partners. Also, if you cannot spend a day without lifting weights, We+ has a small gym in the co-working space. We+ announced the completion of 100 million yuan pre-A round of funding in November 2016, and it plans to expand to more cities adding up to its spaces in Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou, Ningbo, Hangzhou, Suzhou, Xi’an, Wuhan, and Qingdao.
Coffee: Unlimited access to coffee, tea, and beer
Price: 3,000 RMB ~ 5,000 RMB for private office membership depending on location. 1,800 RMB for hot desk membership. 300 RMB for online community membership.
Location: 8 locations in Shanghai
Good for: People who value community or love to go to meet ups
naked Hub organizes a lot of open events, such as monthly startup salon StartupGrind and Startup Weekend. Once renting a place in one spot as a member, the “Hubbers” get access to other spaces in the city. Aiming to bring in co-wellness to its co-working space, the Nanjing space currently offers yoga sessions on its rooftop, and the company further plans to build wellness centers, yoga rooms, and gyms. Born from a hospitality company naked Group, which owns a resorts called naked Stables and naked Castle in Moganshan and restaurants, the members get a discounted price when visiting these spots.
naked Hub has received an undisclosed amount of series B round in November 2016 to add up 30 new locations. Grant Horsfield, the founder of naked Group started naked Hub in 2015 and has co-working communities in Shanghai, Beijing and Hong Kong.
Coffee: Coffee, tea, and milk are free. Stock Belgium beers and French cheese.
Price: 168 RMB for one day and 1160 RMB for one month
Location: Panyu Road 1199, Building 1, Unit 402. 15-minute walk from Hongqiao station (line 3, 4, 10)
Good for: Individual worker or startup who wants the fastest internet speed
It is full of entrepreneurs and engineers who are freelancing, building up their business or, quite often, both! Artists would love this place too, as there are a painting salon and a big gallery room, which is also optimal for yoga sessions. Unlike other places, Agora Space breaks down the open space in rooms of 10-20 desks across three distinct floors and one underground space (formerly a bomb shelter), so it is literally ‘homely’.
Agora Space has been awarded the fastest Internet speed by SmartShanghai since 2015 thanks to their tech team challenging the limits of bandwidth and internet protocols. They were also awarded as one of the top 2 “best air quality co-working space in Shanghai” in the Pureformance Challenge.
Coffee: A cafe inside the co-working space. Doesn’t offer discounts.
Price: 1,000 RMB for Yangpu office, 3,500 RMB for Lujiazui office. Other 5 locations are priced at 1,500 RMB.
Location: 9 locations in Shanghai.
Good for: People who like quiet environment to keep your privacy and resources kept safely
Members of Distrii (shorten for Distribute) use an app to open the glass door to the office and have a locker that works with QR code. If you hold a lot of remote meetings with other offices, Distrii offers you with a huge television call meeting service, and a connected board, where you can note down the meeting notes and it automatically sends to your app. To organize an event, it’s 500 RMB to use the venue for one hour, and space is free under the mutual partnership. Distrii was also awarded as one of the top 2 “The best air quality co-working space in Shanghai”. A visitor can sign up in their application to book any Distrii hot desk or office for one day.
Coffee: A Mini bar located in the co-working space. Americano priced at 11 RMB
Price: Free. Renting an office for 3-6 people is priced at 6,500 RMB. Booking a meeting room costs 80 ~ 1000 RMB one hour, depending on the size of the room.
Location (4 stars): 3 locations in Shanghai
Good for: People who are looking for a free co-working space
My favorite co-working destination is Sandbox because it’s free! When you first visit Sandbox, bring your ID with you to issue a Sandbox card, then you become a member of them and get access to their space and facilities. I conduct a “We Asked” series interviews here, hitting random people in the space. Members should pay extra money to book a meeting room or rent an office space.
Coffee: A cafe inside the co-working space, but offers no discount to its members.
Price: One fixed desk at Jingan Center priced at 1,880 ~ 2,180 RMB. One fixed desk at Zhangjiang space and Hongqiao space is priced at 1200 RMB.
Location: 3 locations in Shanghai
Good for: People who are looking for a startup accelerator
XNODE is a good option for you if you want to get in touch with Shanghai’s international startup community, since its home for Japanese accelerator Takumi Innovators, Korean entrepreneurship center D.CAMP, Australia Landing Pad and global fintech community Next Money SHA. Their main Jingan center is smaller than other co-working spaces, but you’ll be surprised how many different events are held in this space a month. Compared to other co-working spaces, it’s smaller and brings in the dedicated environment to network and collaborate with other companies.