The coworking scene in Turkey is alive and kicking! Coworking spaces in the country are based mostly around Istanbul, where the startup scene is well developed, but the major cities of Ankara and Izmir also have a lot going on.
Take Yazane. A space is only as good as its people, and the founder Kerim had a vision after returning home from experiencing a bunch of other cities that had coworking spaces.
The key he says is building a community and being good at what they do ‐ that is the value of the space. Around 2011 the freelance market in Turkey started to expand and he thought they were ready to open. Turkish people welcomed the change to their way of working and were ready to break free from cubicle‐dom.
The space has been in existence from 2013, first in the hip Karakoy district, and now in Istanbul’s main thoroughfare ‐ Istiklal Avenue.
Kendra, who has been at Yazane for about a year, works as the portfolio manager of Central Asia and Europe for Kiva, a crowdfunding platform for micro-finance. A Canadian transplant who has made most of her friends in the city through working at Yazane, she starts her average day with a coffee with other community members. “I’m more productive here,” she says, compared to working from cafes or home, good chairs and a monitor make a difference! Plus the chance to meet not only locals but also digital nomads passing through the city has been valuable.
Another funky space in the city, Kolektif House, greets members with the slogan “love, create & inspire.” The house says it designs its spaces with the “Strength in numbers” approach. Their aim is to allow people to focus on the work they love.
I visited here for a party and the downstairs space is perfect for events, with just the right combination of style and substance.
Enis says: “I’ve been involved with Kolektif House from day one. Our decision to have our offices there was a no‐brainer.” He believes the key to their success comes from the collaborative atmosphere.
He also loves the in‐house events ‐ opportunities to learn, engage with the community and enjoy himself after a hard day. Anything from brunch, jam sessions, talks etc. go down here. “Have you ever heard of a co‐working space that offers pop‐up massage sessions every once in awhile to its customers?”
Explore our coworking map of Istanbul here: Coworkies.com/coworkingmap
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