Creative Cardiff has established a group to connect, engage and support the growing number of coworking spaces and creative hubs in the Cardiff City Region and further afield.
The Coworking Collective launched as part of BBC Digital Cities Cardiff and gathered together those enabling the hubs ecosystem in the region.
The event provided a snapshot of coworking; both from those managing these innovative spaces and Cardiff University researchers working on hubs.
Hosted by Jamie McGowan, Welsh ICE Campus Director, the showcase at Tramshed Tech explored the importance of creative hubs to economic development, enterprise and entrepreneurship.
The founding members of the Coworking Collective are Hwyl Hub, Rabble Studio, The Sustainable Studio, Tramshed Tech and Welsh ICE.
These hubs alone support 247 companies, equating to more than 550 people.
As well as listening to speakers from these spaces, attendees also heard from hub managers at Entrepreneurial Spark (powered by NatWest) and the new Barclays Eagle Lab and took part in an exercise to map the hubs in the region.
Sara Pepper, Director of Creative Economy at Cardiff University and Creative Cardiff lead, said: “The Coworking Collective is an exciting initiative and we’ve been delighted to support this group of hub mangers who do so much for their hubs and creative businesses. Through this work we have been able to gain insights into their roles and responsibilities as well as their operating environments and in particular current challenges and opportunities.
“We know from our research that these hubs play a significant role in supporting those working in the creative and wider economy, whether as small businesses or as freelancers.
"The Coworking Collective will offer a way to connect and engage with this community and those who are enabling it, and no doubt will be a force to be reckoned with!”
Host Jamie McGowan said: “More people today are starting to realise that self-employment is a genuine route to self-sufficiency. This is the challenge and the opportunity that coworking and entrepreneurial spaces meet on a day to day basis; from helping someone turn an idea into an invoice, to supporting start-ups through testing funding rounds - a supportive environment is key.
"The Coworking Collective was formed to ensure that some of Wales' most widely used entrepreneurial spaces share best practice so we can better serve our coworking communities. There is a great onus on us today to make sustainability through self-employment a realistic possibility for anyone; to do that, we must ensure that we are doing everything we can to create an environment that gives our members the support they need to start and grow their businesses."