Over the past few years, the co-working movement has built steam across the entrepreneurial front.
Co-working facilities have been born out of innovation, creativity and the entrepreneurial need for a good place to work. Typically, though not exclusively, used by the self-employed, telecommuters, and freelance workers, co-working is a business services model that involves individuals working independently or collaboratively in shared office space.
Now, in Asheville, a co-working center has taken shape at Focal Point Co-working, located at 125 S. Lexington Ave Suite 101 in the Lexington Station building - a 600 square foot, high-ceilinged, flexible office space that includes private offices as well as shared office space, and additional collaborative space for meetings and presentations.
“[We offer] a place to work with natural light, fiber optic Wi-Fi and complimentary coffee and tea,” said founder, Alison Pages. “We are here to help each other develop [business] skills, promote their business, make connections, share information, and network. We host monthly workshops for professional development and encourage members to utilize other members’ services. To encourage collaboration and provide additional value, we ask members and local businesses to provide the Focal Point community with discounted rates for products and services. These include legal, marketing, bookkeeping, catering and yoga. In addition, we’re expanding our member discount program to include reduced pricing for business services.”
Born out of Pages’ need to build entrepreneurial relationships and establish a home base for her commercial real estate business upon relocating from Miami to Asheville five years ago, Focal Point began to take shape, opening in April of 2018.
“When I relocated to Asheville from Miami about 5 years ago, I found it difficult to establish new relationships in Asheville since I still worked as a commercial real estate broker servicing corporate clients located in South Florida. After some time, I decided to utilize my 26 years of real estate experience to help businesses in Asheville. I decided to stay independent and focus on purchasing income-producing properties for myself and on behalf of other investment groups. Although working from home had its advantages, it was isolating and came with lots of distraction. While in search of office space for a client, I found the perfect space in downtown Asheville with an ideal layout for a co-working center. It just needed some cosmetic improvements and a little love. Voila - Focal Point came to life.” said Pages.
Involvement with Focal Point begins with a membership based on an individual’s business needs. All membership levels are month-to-month and give access to the workspace and include monthly workshops, reduced pricing for event space rental, printing and scanning, and coffee, tea and water.
The entry level membership is the community membership, at $25 per month, which includes four day passes to Focal Point to work in the co-working space. At the Hot Desk level, members pay $149 per month for access Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and work from partitioned desks.
There are also dedicated desks for $399 per month and private co-working offices for $499 a month, which allow members to secure their belongings and have a reserved space to come to every day.
In addition, Focal Point offers executive suite offices, though all are currently all occupied.
In addition to offering office space and services, Focal Point hosts a a monthly lunch and learn workshop called Biz & Bites (free to members and $5 for non-members), hosted by a presenter discussing business topics ranging from leadership and marketing, to financing and more.