Turn the page on a chapter in the history of New York’s startup scene: In 2014, General Assembly will shutter its coworking offering, to focus on classes and events like hackathons and job fairs. Business Insider estimates about a hundred people are affected.
“While we’re making serious investments to grow our New York footprint, there is an almost impossible need for even more space to accommodate our classes, events, students, alumni and staff,” said CEO Jake Schwartz in a blog post explaining the move.
When General Assembly launched, startups desperately needed desks at a reasonable price. But now there’s a host of competitors and alternatives. Plus, judging by the note from Mr. Schwartz, the business has basically outgrown the offering:
“Our community has grown much larger than our amazing co-working members. It now encompasses the tens of thousands of students who’ve come through our doors and the more than 3,000 alumni of our long-form courses, not to mention the hundreds of instructors and the 2,000 hiring partners who come to GA in search of top talent.”
Not to mention it’s probably a lot easier to scale a business built on a stream of events in a smaller space, as opposed to adding ever-increasing numbers of tenants, which requires wading deep into the muck that is the Manhattan real estate market. TechCrunch says General Assembly’s Flatiron HQ will be expanding in the coming days, from 30,000 to 45,000 square feet, but it’ll be employees filling up the space.
Mr. Schwartz added that, “For the NYC startup community, we will continue doing what we have been doing all along – hosting events, career fairs, hackathons, fireside chats, and panels” and promises they’ll help current coworkers find new homes.
So where’s everyone going?