#CountdownToLaunch

Cardiff Metropolitan University has launched a new enterprise initiative to encourage and support student entrepreneurship. Countdown to Launch was an intensive five day programme that ran this month designed to provide students with the skills and knowledge they need to kick-start their businesses.
Over the first four days, students gained insight in to the world of business from lecturers, guest speakers and successful business owners. Speaking on Wednesday the 12th was Indycube founder Mark Hooper.

We travelled to Cardiff Metropolitan University in Llandaf in the morning, ready to kick-start the day with an inspirational interactive session. Not being from a business background myself, I found Mark’s words thoroughly interesting and relevant to any new business venture – I was almost tempted to start up my own!

The view on our way to Cardiff Metropolitan
The view on our way to Cardiff Metropolitan


Mark began by speaking about his previous job as an accountant; a job he took in order to develop new skills which would be crucial to any future venture, in a move which may have made Indycube possible.

Students were inspired by his theory that it is much easier to start up a business in the current economy than it was a decade ago – with social media, coworking and viral marketing now in play, chances of success are broader than they ever have been. 'There's less chance of failure, and less to lose these days' Mark said.

The class split in to groups to create ‘business superheros,’ (in the form of stick men on white boards), labelling the respective skills, attributes and personality traits they believed were essential for a good business founder. Mark then encouraged students to identify their own ‘superhero’ skills; responses included ‘creativity,’ ‘emotional intelligence,’ ‘organisation’ and ‘adaptability.’ The ability to adapt quickly was recognised as a key component in ensuring the success of future businesses, since the world of technology is shifting rapidly, causing changes in funding, marketing and advertising.

Students working on their 'Business Superheros'
Students working on their 'Business Superheros'


The students at Cardiff Metropolitan University seemed weary of disclosing any business plans for fear of plagiarism, and preferred to remain confidential about their ideas. Mark, however, encouraged collaboration between students. Networking and union of skills is one of Indycube’s selling points, and a big advantage of coworking.

On to interview techniques next, where Mark taught candidates that it’s okay to have weaknesses. If a business leader can accept his or her weakness, he can then find someone to work with in order to develop and expand on his own skills. This is where networking comes in, but it’s important to remember that it’s not just about shaking hands and talking, but rather about really getting to know people.

Mark described his job as ‘going around drinking too much coffee and eating too much cake’ – obviously there is more to running a coworking company than socialising, but being your own boss does sound pretty appealing when put like that.

Students responded well to the activities. One woman said, ‘it’s inspired me, if you can see people in front of you that have made it, you can turn that on yourself.’

Last week, I learned that entrepreneurs and clinically insane patients often have many of the same personality traits; that passion is the key to driving forward a successful business, and that starting a company is for anyone who believes that they can do their job better than any boss. All-in-all, it was an educational morning.

The fifth day saw students pitch their ideas to a panel in an attempt to win a tailor made prize for their business. Mark was the chairman for the panel of judges, but more on that to come soon...

@lpadcardiff
@cardiffmet
@indycube
#countodwntolaunch

Green Dragon's Den

In 2006, the Hay-on-Wye literary festival began the Hay-on-Earth campaign, concerning itself with managing and reducing the festival’s carbon footprint. Part of the Hay-on-Earth programme, the Green Dragons Den Competition, entered its fourth year this month, and was sponsored by Unlimited. Looking to support ‘social entrepreneurs,’ the Green Dragons Den was searching for businesses which effectively sustain our community. Competitors battled for the chance to win £15,000 grant money for their businesses.

Among the participating companies were Greenstream FlooringA Wheely Good IdeaIndycubeEgni and Action for Elders. Each business had an hour to set up shop and convince both audience members and the Dragons that they were deserving of the prize. Indycube’s stall was manned by Mark Hooper and myself, and consisted of biscuits, coffee and some strong salesmanship. Mark chatted to onlookers, explaining Indycube’s functions, and fantastic co-working enterprise, while handing out free Jaffa Cakes – (what would coworking be without those?) Following these displays, each applicant had three minutes to pitch their ideas to the audience and the judges, explaining their current ventures, potential profit margins and proposed plans for the prize money. The dragons claimed to be on the lookout for small-time businesses with interesting ideas for social change, and the passion to succeed. Questions from the judges and curious individuals in the crowd were then asked and answered.

The dragons on stage at the festival last week
The dragons on stage at the festival last week


The winner of the prize money was Greenstream Flooring, represented by director Ellen PettsGreenstream aim to sell recycled carpet tiles at affordable prices, to the direct benefit of the community. On winning the £15,000, Petts said 'we can make this project much bigger, expand, get loads more people involved, and get loads more people on low incomes getting the carpets that they otherwise wouldn't have.'

To listen to a recording of the event, presented by Andy Middleton, follow this link https://www.hayfestival.com/p-6159-green-dragons-den-final-2.aspx

Earlier in the week, Mark also participated in Slipstream WalesTYF’s ambitious project looking to bring together businesses and environmental leaders in a bid to find innovative new methods of sustainability in Wales.

Congratulations to Mark, and to Indycube, for continuing to be an economic answer to co working all around Wales, and to Ellen Petts at Greenstream for winning the prize.

We had a fantastic day and were glad to be invited along.


Meet the Anchors

Meet the Anchors
Indycube focuses on establishing a diverse community of creatives and professions from all industries. Each of our five locations have anchor associates. They come in, put on the coffee, make sure fellow coworkers sign in, oh and put on the heaters when needed. So, for the next 5 months we will give you a blog a month introducing and telling you a little about each anchor, so you become more familiar with our local coworking community. If you want to meet them face to face then don’t be shy, come in and say hello.

This month we will be introducing the anchors at our Cardiff Bay space.

Location #2: Cardiff Bay

Meet Simon Stratton

Si G Stratton HeadshotName & twitter handle: Si G Stratton @bansheemovie
Job title: Writer/producer
Anchor since: September 2012
Field of expertise/ main projects: www.mysteryofthebanshee.com
Hobbies: Cooking, learning Welsh and running
What's the best thing about Indycube? The people - it's like a support group for start-up
Tell us a joke... I heard there's a giant insect rampaging through Cardiff centre, but it could be an urban moth.

Meet David Lloyd

Dai Skep 2

Name & twitter handle: David Lloyd @dockradrecords
Job title: Music Manager
Anchor since: Dec 2012
Field of expertise/ main projects: Music Publishing / Record Label / Radio Production
Hobbies: Music! Rugby and DJing
What's the best thing about Indycube? Freedom to work around your own schedule, sharing ideas and contacts
Tell us a joke... How many freelancers does it take to change a lightbulb? None. That's not my job!

Meet Stephen Milburn

Stephen-15

Name & twitter handle: Stephen Milburn (@Stephen_Milburn)
Job title: Founder at Tradebox Media App Developers. http://tradeboxmedia.com
Anchor since: Well, erm, pretty much now!
Field of expertise/ main projects: We do end-to-end app development and publishing. So one day I'll be working on UI for a client and then next I'll be working on the UX for own, in-house projects.
Hobbies: I run my own business! I have no hobbies! Though, if pushed, travelling would be right up there. Right next to eating cheese.
What's the best thing about Indycube? There's a strong community spirit of sharing here - if you're at almost any stage of your SME, then there'll be something to learn here.
Tell us a joke... "How many programers dose it take to change a light bulb? None – It’s a hardware problem"

Ignite 2013 Challenge

Ignite 2013 Challenge
Raising money for a charity requires energy, teamwork and most importantly time. 24 hours may not seem like much time to raise money, but these students proved it was possible.
The Ignite challenge began on Saturday 24th February. Students from four major Welsh universities; Cardiff University, University of Wales, Newport, Cardiff Metropolitan University and University of Glamorgan, met at 10am on Saturday to pitch their ideas to a panel of Dragons. They gave a 3 minute presentation about how they plan to raise money for local charity, Ty Hafan, in just 24 hours. The Dragons would then go away to discuss how much money they would give to each group depending on the strength of their ideas, management, planning and organisational skills.

Students had to think about how they would utilise their time wisely to raise the most money possible, creating a business plan of how much money they were going to need and in turn how much profit they would make.

Ideas ranged from: selling pizza to hungry students on their nights out, making a wish on a balloon and setting it free to a charity fun run.

The Dragons had £1000 as seed money and had full freedom to distribute it to any team which they felt were the strongest. Taking into account how much they originally asked for and if they would actually make the profit they had stated judging by their idea.

The panel consisted of four Dragons:

Ignite 2013-251
Russell Britton. Russell brings 10 years’ experience in brand positioning, strategy, and design to work with businesses who want to build brands that thrill their customers, inspire their teams and raise their profits.

He’s also a Visiting Lecturer at the University of Glamorgan and University of Wales, Newport assisting in teaching and consulting and has received continuous awards, short-listings and nominations for design and entrepreneurship since 2005. Russell is most proud of MTV Design Award for designing and developing a billboard campaign to combat voter apathy for their audience.

As well as running his business, this year, Russell is working on bringing 3 digital products to market focused around brand engagement and open data

Abi Carter is a forensic scientist who runs her own successful company offering a range of expert witness services to legal teams throughout the UK. Working mainly with defence solicitors and private investigators within the fields of criminal investigation and also with insurance firms on fraud cases.

Abi was awarded ‘Female Entrepreneur of the Year 2010’ at the South Wales Business Awards has been published in a book called ‘100 Modern Muses’, which showcases inspirational women who help to inspire other women in business.

Carmel Barry's background was in business banking which she was involved in for 23 years with Nat West, as a senior business manager, she worked with the Banks Regional Credit & Risk team and undertook 2 secondments with Price Waterhouse and KPMG looking at Balanced Business card, and links to individual performance.  She left Nat West in 2000 and has had her own company, delivering financial training, and working with clients to assist with securing funding.  She began working with Centre four Business in 2000 also, where she has been a business adviser and then managed the Welsh Government's Taste of Enterprise and more recently the Welsh Government's Business Start Up service .

This work has allowed her to engage with a wide range of people trying to start up and grow their business and to link into significant intermediaries whose help has been pivotal to the businesses, Test Trading is the concept behind Taste of Enterprise, allowing people to develop their business and themselves in a low risk and supported environment, this has been the most valuable and enjoyable work she has carried out.

Last but not least, Mark Hooper. As the founder of Indycube he knows all about setting up a successful business. Moreover, as the cofounder of Indycube Ventures he is able to recognise when an idea can be made into a successful business. He found the experience of becoming a Dragon very interesting as he got to see first hand how a challenge could inspire students to think with an entrepreneurial mindset.

Ignite 2013-80

Sunday 25th February at 3pm was the challenge deadline. All the teams had to meet at Indycube Castle Arcade to count how much they had each raised. However the ultimate goal was to raise money for Ty Hafan.

All the teams raised a total of £3000 and the winning group, Night fever, raised the most at £600.

**********
Ignite 2013-240

Well done to all the teams for their hard work and the organisers for their efforts in putting this together. Also a big thank you to all the Dragons and giving these young students a chance to gain this experience.

Finally a thank you to the Ignite team for giving Indycube’s founder- Mark Hooper the opportunity to be part of this wonderful event and share the experience, it was truly a delight.

Pwinty - the Photo Printing API: Guest Blog

Seed funding in Wales

Last week I announced that Pwinty has raised a £125,000 seed funding round here in Cardiff. I thought it’d be useful to share some of my reflections on what went well, what didn’t go so well, and what I’ve learnt from the whole experience.

“Plans are worthless, but planning is everything” (Dwight D. Eisenhower)

When I started to think about raising money, I had quite a dismissive approach to the idea of financial forecasts. I’d read countless articles on Hacker News suggesting that they were pointless, after all, at a startup, you can barely predict what you might bring in next month, let alone in three years time.

However, I think a good set of financial forecasts are one of the best weapons you can have when going to investors. The process of making them will tell you a lot about your business and its potential.

Some of the questions you’ll be forced to answer:

  • What are my margins? How will these change over time.
  • How much will it cost to acquire a customer. What will that customer be worth over their time using the service?
  • How will revenue grow over time?
  • What assets and equipment is the company going to need?
  • How big is the market? Can we only address the Cardiff market, the whole UK, worldwide?
  • How many jobs is the company going to create?
If you’ve already made some sales, you should be able to have a good stab at most of these. No one expects them to be correct- what these numbers will show are whether you have a potentially investable business  (is the market large enough, will you make enough money off each customer, can the business grow without huge amounts of capital).

The maths

Your seed investors are looking for a business that can make them a 10x return in a couple of years. You want to give away as little of your business as possible. You need to raise enough money to grow the business. And somehow, out of this you need to pull a valuation.

I can’t offer too much advice here beyond saying – don’t get hung up on it too much.  Let’s look at an example:

image

So with a 50% higher valuation, you’re under 10% worse off on exit. As long as the terms are decent, don’t try optimizing for valuation – optimize for your chance of success – the right investors at a lower valuation give you a far higher expected outcome than the wrong investors at a higher valuation, or no investors at all!

image

These numbers are really interesting when you think about it. In this (admittedly contrived) example, you’re better of taking the low valuation, if your investors give you a 2% edge to your chance of succeeding, instead of taking the 50% higher valuation.

Where’s the money going?

With all the hype there is around fundraising (especially over in the US), it is easy to forget that raising some money is not an end in itself. Equity finance is just another way of injecting money into the business (typically favoured by startups as they’re too risky to get bank loans, or issue bonds).

You need to have a clear idea of exactly what the money will be spent on, and how that will transform your business. If you don’t- you need to go back to the drawing board.

You will be expected to back your assumptions up

This gets easier over time. Early in the process, I took a train up to London to pitch an early stage VC. As their minimum investment was £250k, we had to rejig the forecasts to show why we absolutely needed £250k. So, David Hulston and I spent the journey changing customer acquisition costs, our hiring profile, our advertising spend to get all the numbers in line. I then spent an hour justifying why these numbers were right; then passed the journey back to Cardiff reverting all the figures in preparation for a pitch the next day, where I had to argue that we actually needed £125,000 to get where we wanted to go!

I was lucky enough to have the help of Mark Hooper at Indycube Ventures in putting our financial projections together – and he did a much better job than I’d have done on my own.

De-risk yourself

This isn’t Silicon Valley, and no one’s going to give you money on the off-chance you’re building the next Facebook. You need to make yourself, and your company look as much like a ‘sure-thing’ as possible. The best way to do this is to remove as much early stage risk as you can:

  • Can you build the product? I already have
  • Will anyone pay for it? They already are
  • Can this become a large business? Yes- here are the projections, market size data etc.
By the time you’ve done these three things you’ve removed three reasons for the investor to say ‘No’.  The next one you need to convince them on is:

  • Are these the right people to grow this company?
And by this point you just need to refer them to the fact that you’ve built the product, got paying customers, and you’re already growing the company (you just need some money to do it faster).

Finding Investors

I can’t recommend the help I’ve had from Indycube Ventures enough. As well as investing in Pwinty, they’ve also brought together all the other investors in our round.

Beware people calling themselves angel investors who have never made an angel investment. Chances are high that they never will, and just like calling themselves an angel investor.

As with all things- if you can get personal introductions to investors, it helps a lot. Cardiff is small enough that this shouldn’t be tricky.

If you feel there aren’t enough angel investors in Cardiff- get on a train to London, there are lots of investors, and there’s a good story to tell about how Cardiff is a great place to build a business (low housing and office costs, low salaries, but still close to London).

Unfair Advantages

As well as the cheap housing, office and wage costs mentioned above, Welsh startups can also get support from the Welsh Government and often local councils.

The Welsh Government has lots of grant and funding schemes that give Welsh based startups an unfair advantage over their London based counterparts.

Look at applying for DDF (Digital Development Fund) funding. It’s well suited to startup tech businesses, and surprisingly light on bureaucracy. You can get matched funding of up to £50k (though there’s an easier process if you’re applying for less than £25k of funding).

In Pwinty’s case- getting £25,000 from the DDF meant I had to sell less of the company to raise the money needed to move forwards.

Listen

Most posts about fundraising tell you to persevere, that you’ll need to keep talking to investor after investor until you meet someone who ‘gets it’.

I’m going to go the opposite route- and suggest that as founders, we’re often too slow or too unwilling to confront genuine problems or issues in our businesses that are stopping people investing.

It’s easy to convince yourself that you’re just a misunderstood visionary, and the investors are the problem; it’s much harder to listen to some hard truths about where you are, and what needs doing to sort it. I learnt a lot, changed a lot, and improved a lot while fundraising; just by listening to what our investors were telling me, or challenging me on.

Meet the Anchors

Meet the Anchors
Indycube focuses on establishing a diverse community of creatives and professions from all industries. Each of our five locations have anchor associates. They come in, put on the coffee, make sure fellow coworkers sign in, oh and put on the heaters when needed. So, for the next 5 months we will give you a blog a month introducing and telling you a little about each anchor, so you become more familiar with our local coworking community. If you want to meet them face to face then don’t be shy, come in and say hello.

Location #1
Castle Arcade

Meet Miriam E Lewis

page-about-profile-miriam

Twitter name: @miriamelewis
Job title: Freelance Digital Artist
Anchor since: September 2012
Field of expertise/ main projects: Graphic design and illustration. My main project right now is working with another anchor Si Stratton on his ambitious project about Banshee's. Its a lot of fun and the Kickstarter should be launching soon *hint hint*.
Hobbies: Reading about dragons & detectives.
What's the best thing about Indycube? Its really flexible to your needs and provides a good place to help you focus on difficult work.
Tell us a joke... I don't know any jokes but I know an anti-joke. "What did Batman say to Robin before they got in the car?   "Get in the car"

Meet Mike Erskine

Screen shot 2012-08-26 at 16.42.08

Twitter name: @mikejerskine
Job title: Filmmaker & sustainability communicator.

Anchor since: September 2012
Field of expertise/ main projects: I'm currently working with Ramblers Cymru making a series of promotional films - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BaYm61R_vYk
Working with TYF Group building case studies to communicate the new Sustainable Development bill for Welsh Government.
Working with Big Blue Bike in Cardiff to build more business for cargo bike deliveries in the city centre.
Hobbies: outdoors stuff, and playing with cameras, usually at the same time.
What's the best thing about Indycube? the great variety of people you meet and talk to.
Tell us a joke... Two elephants fell off a cliff. Boom! Boom!

Mint Online Solutions: a Guest Blog Post

We were pleased to see this blog about indycube. Thank you Mint.

Mint Online Solutions: a Guest Blog Post
Are you aware of the concept of coworking office space in South Wales? If not, then check out INDYCUBE (www.indycube.com).

All inclusive, flexible (no contract) office space for only £10 per day (inclusive). No contract, just turn up whenever you want/need - or take out a rolling monthly contract which works out at even less than £10 per day.

A productive place to work, meet other business people, or to hold client meetings in a professional environment.

I just wanted to give INDYCUBE a shout out, as I am LOVING working somewhere other than the house (which was driving me a bit crazy last year - as work at home people with young kids will be able to empathise with).

Co-working office space is quite a popular concept in big cities (especially London), but is a new concept in South Wales.

Indycube now have 3 (I think) co-working office space locations in Cardiff, 1 in Swansea and 1 open(ing) in Newport. My business has taken root in the Culverhouse Cross Indycube office, in the HTV Media Centre - a great address to have on your business cards if you are a modern, digital business.

For anyone who wants to work in and amongst other bright, entrepreneurial people (great networking opportunities) then you should check it out.

Rich Best

ps - I am NOT getting any commission or benefits for this shout out, but maybe I should be! I just want other small businesses in South Wales to know that cheap co-working office space is here and expanding as a working concept for growing businesses and entrepreneurs. I didn't know about this concept 9 months ago, but now live and breathe it every day.

We're moving - Cardiff Bay

We have moved to:
103 Bute Street
Cardiff Bay
United Kingdom
CF10 5AD
Telephone number: 029 2048 0885
New space will be opening on the 3rd Dec 2012
At Indycube, we constantly strive to improve our facilities and spaces, ensuring that our coworkers get the very best value for their £10 per day. We've recently negotiated use of a new and improved space in Cardiff Bay - a perfect coworking location - high ceilings, stripped wooden floors and loads of natural light - the studio at 103 Bute Street can comfortably play host to up to 16 coworkers, and has all the usual facilities you'd expect from Indycube (endless tea and coffee, wifi, a meeting room, toilets and kitchen area).

Only 2 mins walk away from our old location, we're confident the studio will prove to be an excellent coworking space for old and new clients alike.

Indycube Cardiff Bay will be open as normal from 9am to 5:30pm Monday to Friday and is facilitated by Simon Stratton.

You can book a day at Indycube Cardiff Bay with GoCardless below – then just drop us a line to let us know when you’re coming!




indycube Newport Central Opening!

Alacrity house is modern, colourful and spacious, making it perfect for freelancers, entrepreneurs and young startups. Newport Central is very accessible; 5 minutes from the motorway (J26), 5 minutes from the train station, directly opposite the bus station and a cycle rack is also available on site.

The building is surrounded by an energetic atmosphere, with the Riverfront Theatre and University of Newport either side, the river bank behind the building and the Kingsway Centre beside the bus station. The space also has a kitchen with endless tea and Welsh Coffee Company coffee, toilets, showers, and two meeting rooms.
Indycube number 5 is on its way, and on its way to the City of Newport. In collaboration with the Enterprise team at Newport Uni, we'll be starting to cowork from Alacrity House from 7th December 2012 (10 am). Our official launch will be in the New Year, but we know Newport freelancers and micro-businesses need this space now, therefore we've negotiated the earlier start date.

Newport Central provides a desk for creative and professionals from various industries, with all the facilities required to make the coworking space a coworking community.

At Indycube we constantly work to better our facilities and spaces. Always finding the best locations and those that are most suited for coworking at Indycube. As a result, our efforts have paid off and Indycube will be opening in Newport, Alacrity House, doors open for a sneak peak day on the 7th of December 2012.

For further details and to book your place click on the link below:

http://indycubenewport.eventbrite.co.uk/

What is a Community Interest Company

What is a Community Interest Company
Many people have been asking what a CIC means and why we chose to become one. Lets begin by telling you what CIC stands for, it is: Community Interest Company. 

A community interest company profits the community in which it operates. “Community Interest Companies (CICS) are limited companies, with special additional features, created for the use of people who want to conduct a business or other activity for community benefit, and not purely for private advantage. Registration of a company as a CIC has to be approved by the Regulator who also has a continuing monitoring and enforcement role (CIC regulator website).

The founders of Indycube felt that there was a large pool of creative professionals in Wales, in need of affordable and professional workspace. They also wanted to build something that would benefit the community rather than themselves.

 So what does this mean to someone joining Indycube and becoming part of a coworking community?

Indycube only charges £10 a day, which hopefully makes it accessible to any new starter setting out on a business venture. The £10 spent at Indycube for one day could be compared to one day of heating or to sit in Starbucks for a few hours.

Prices are even lower for those who can commit to taking a full time associateship. Daily rates drop down as low as £6.67 per day!

Any price paid is inclusive of free tea, coffee, unlimited fast wifi, meeting spaces and the option to have a registered address at Indycube.

The Directors plan to make Indycube a profitable business. The great thing about a CIC is that these profits can only be used by the community it is established to serve.

If you would like to understand and get a better idea about coworking or being a CIC then come in and see what we do, or if you would like to set up your own CIC business then we would be more than happy to share our experiences and provide guidance.

Accelerated Serendipity and Me...

Accelerated Serendipity and Me...
So, the first time I went to Indycube to have a brainstorm about the future of coworking in Cardiff, Mark mentioned the phrase 'accelerated serendipity'. I tried to look clever and knowing, but clearly failed as he kindly offered to explain it for me...in a nutshell, it's the concept that happy accidents will happen more often in the right environment.

Well, I must be swimming in the right environment, as it has been a summer of happy accidents for me; including one fairly major one. Back in May I saw a tweet from Taff Housing, which I read in a hurry (as I do most things) - and which, I thought, was asking for local business owners to offer work placements to young people. I figured that we could offer this at Rules of Play, and that it would be a good way of giving something back to the community. So off I trotted to the information evening, to which I arrived late, to hear the words  'so, this is the first stage of our recruitment process'. At which point I noticed that everyone in the room was smartly dressed (unlike me) - and there was definitely nobody there with the remains of a toddler's pasta sauce on their shirt  (like me).

It became apparent that Taff Housing were looking to hire someone to assist them in developing new revenue streams, in order to safeguard and continue with their core activity of building and maintaining high quality homes for people on low incomes. I was intrigued by the opportunity, and the energy of the organisation, and so decided to put an application in, without having any real expectation that it would go much further than that. I thought no more of it, and pretty much the next day, Mark invited me to join the Indycube team, which I was over the moon about.

So when I was offered the position at Taff Housing a few weeks later, I was fairly surprised - but decided that I could probably juggle it with my commitment to Indycube, which is what I've been doing for the last couple of months. And actually, it probably would have worked fine if it was just those two - but throwing Rules of Play and Garlands into the mix, not to mention my long suffering kids, has meant that I'm in that horrible position of doing everything just well enough to get by, and not doing anything to the best of my ability.

So I've made the decision to scale down my involvement in Indycube for the forseeable future. It's a fantastic project, and one I love being part of. But coworking in Wales is on the cusp of taking off big time - and as such Indycube is facing a mahoosive few months - it is simply not fair of me to expect that I can play a part in that if I don't have the time to give 110%. I'll still be involved, just a bit more behind the scenes; and I'll still be working from Indycube Castle Quarter a fair bit, as an associate rather than a team member.

So - thank you to Mark for inviting me on to the team, and thank you to everyone else who's made my coworking adventure, thus far, such a great journey. It's an adventure that's not over yet I'm sure!

Michelle

Accelerated serendipity indeed. Just a posh phrase for too many buses coming along at once, if you ask me ;)

Cardiff Start - Board Members Needed!

If you're an Indycube associate, you may well be aware of Cardiff Start, a group of entrepreneurs, developers, designers and marketing bods working in, or connected to, the startup scene here in Cardiff. We've been working hard to raise the profile of Cardiff startups - partly so we can find each other to offer mutual support, partly to raise awareness with the powers that be of the specific needs of tech startups, and partly to encourage more people to choose Cardiff as their startup base.
We've held a couple of hack days at Indycube recently to try and shape the future of our group, and we're at a stage now where we think we'd benefit from some more structure to help us achieve our aims. So we're looking to appoint a Board - if you, or anyone you know, would be interested and have something to offer, please throw your/their name into the hat here.
In the meantime, if you want to know more, our next meet is Weds 24th October at Indycube Cardiff Bay; if you can't wait that long to get involved, check our occasional  blog, or come and find us on our Facebook group.


indycube Castle Quarter is here!

There was a moment at about 8.30am this morning, when there was copper piping and tools all over the floor, an alternately dripping and spurting stopcock, and the news that BT wouldn't be here to sort the wireless after all, when Mark and I looked at each other and almost - just almost - voiced the words 'lets cancel the opening'. But neither of us quite had the heart to say it - and boy am I glad. Yes, I know opening without any water was not ideal (that problem was resolved not too long into the morning) - and that having no wireless, for a coworking space, could be seen as professional suicide. (yep, we'll be chatting with BT on that topic too fairly shortly.)

But I'm so, so glad that we went ahead - the genuine warmth and excitement from all of you who came along, and also from those of you who couldn't make it but tweeted good wishes, really made our day. So thank you all - for turning up, for being patient with multi-tethering of iPhones, for your twitterlove, and most of all for making Indycube Castle Quarter such a great place to be today.

But this is just the beginning of the story - it's over to all of you to shape what happens next...it's your space, after all!

One amazing morning, a chair and a half, and a website.

Well - this morning was brilliant. Not because the sun was shining - though that helps of course - but because it really feels like we have the beginnings of an amazing coworking community here in Cardiff. The buzz in Indycube Cardiff Bay this morning was awesome, - with connections being made, help being exchanged, and an impromptu coffee break gossip too - all the best bits of office working in fact. Obviously some of our coworking experimenters thought so too, as more than a couple are coming back tomorrow :)

From Indycube Cardiff Bay this morning to Indycube Castle Quarter this afternoon - and the space is beginning to take shape nicely. The kitchen area went in today, Mark put together at least a chair and a half, and true to form the BT engineer failed to turn up...but don't fret, have been assured that we'll be wfi'd up for our opening on Friday - a few tickets are left but get in quick!

And we've also (nearly) finished our new website, but we've decided to go live with it anyway at www.indycube.com. There's lots of glitches to be sorted out - not least domain name issues - and there'll be more content being loaded in the next few weeks. But in the meantime, please have a look around, tell us what you like and don't like, and let us know if you want us to feature your site on our blogroll...and even better, if you'd like to write a guest post - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

OK - that's all folks - see you Friday!


indycube Community News

Great news for the local coworking community - Following the success of Indycube Culverhouse Cross, we have two new Indycube spaces set up and ready to go!

We’ll be opening Indycube Cardiff Bay on Tuesday 7th August, bringing a coworking space right to the heart of the thriving business community that has sprung up in the Bay area over the last two decades.

Shortly afterwards, on Friday 17th August, we’ll be opening the doors to Indycube Central in Cardiff’s Castle Quarter – this lovely space, in the historic Castle Arcade, is conveniently located for local independent eateries, coffee shops and also is easily accessible by public transport.`

This is great news for freelancers, entrepreneurs and micro-organisations, who will now be able to enjoy access to professional office space and meeting rooms on a PAYG basis in three Cardiff locations. However, the real benefit to being part of Indycube is membership of our growing and vibrant community of coworkers, bringing peer advice and support, networking, learning, socialising and even new business opportunities.

If you’d like to come along and check out our new spaces, we’ll be offering coffee and croissants as well as a day’s free coworking on our opening day – tickets will be available shortly but in limited numbers so make sure you sign up as soon as they are released!

Gary Walpole