Naspers-owned internet TV company ShowMax has chosen co-working space Nairobi Garage as its Kenyan headquarters, saying the company wants to learn from the startup community in Nairobi.
Launched in South Africa in 2015, ShowMax decided this year to open an East African office based in Nairobi, to aid its pan-African expansion.
Rather than set up its own office, ShowMax has chosen to position itself within the local entrepreneurship hub, saying the decision was prompted by the recognition that regional expansion plans must be based on local knowledge.
By basing itself at the region’s “heart of digital entrepreneurship”, ShowMax says it hopes to learn from the local business community.
“We chose to base our operations at the Nairobi Garage for both practical and competitive reasons. Practically, it’s a flexible space well-known for consistently delivering the services essential to running a business like ours. Competitively, we want to be plugged-in at the heart of digital entrepreneurship in the region. We’re looking forward to learning from and hopefully contributing to the business community in Nairobi,” said Chris Savides, head of ShowMax Africa.
The move reflects an increasing eagerness by corporates to embed themselves within the entrepreneurship community in Africa.
It also speaks to the benefits of co-working as a concept, which has so far largely remained the operating model of startups and freelancers.
“The co-working concept is a proven model and by surrounding themselves with startups and entrepreneurs, we think ShowMax is making the right move to grow their business,” said Hannah Clifford, general manager of Nairobi Garage.
Launched in 2012, Nairobi Garage is the largest co-working space in Kenya. Disrupt Africa reported in November 2015 the organisation expanded to a second premises in Nairobi.
Clifford recently published a guest post explaining why co-working spaces are the cornerstone of the entrepreneurship ecosystem.