In yet another sign that the flexible workspace is shifting up a gear, two highly respected technology firms have made the decision to merge.
RJmetis and Phoenix Broadband (Medusa Business) are now flying the same colours. The result is Hubcreate, which pools the combined knowledge and experience of both teams to deliver a finely-tuned service to workspace operators.
Businesses are adopting a work-anywhere-anytime culture, and the workspace industry is responding with greater versatility and a more intuitive approach to booking space.
To truly enter the realms of 'workspace as a service', however, workspace operators need a technical solution that is as flexible as the workspace they provide - and this merger is a direct response.
Historically, technology providers within the flexible workspace industry focused largely on the needs of business centres. Today, however, there are many more client demands and varieties of workspace to take into consideration.
Among them, an accelerating number of workspace centres offer coworking or shared workplaces, which operate on a different model to that of serviced and managed offices. Businesses choose collaborative workspace, business lounges and meeting rooms in part due to its enhanced flexibility, with choices to use space by the day, even by the hour.
The question is, how do you create a system that can manage the diversity of workspace in our industry? And not only that, but in a market dominated by independent operators, how do you ensure that the system design is flexible enough to suit the individual requirements of hundreds of independent businesses?
That's the challenge facing Hubcreate. And as the old adage proves, two heads are better than one:
"The market is changing so rapidly and to keep up with the change, we felt that the sum of our parts was so much greater," said Justin Harley, Managing Director of RJmetis. "More resources and brainpower will deliver a fantastic product set to our customers, faster."
Tony Freeth, Co-Founder of Phoenix Broadband, added that the new Hubcreate team aims to "make the process of managing a workspace hub completely effortless".
"Both teams have made exciting developments over the past two years that are just coming to market," he said. "Specifically, as separate companies, we spent many hours looking at hubs, clubs and coworks to discover what was needed. By merging we can turn our developments into something far more comprehensive and all-embracing."
By delivering versatile workspace that is more flexible and more intuitive to the changing needs of businesses, "all-encompassing" is indeed what our sector is becoming - and Hubcreate is targeting a technology solution, or "space ecosystem", that can reflect this change both now and in the future.
The decision to bring these two firms together signals a step-change in the way workspace is both utilised and managed. It also demonstrates the rapid evolution of flexible workspace, and a shared vision that will ultimately help to align our industry with the exciting opportunities of a changing business landscape.
Look out for HubCreate at BCA Conference 2014, which takes place on Thursday 22nd May at the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre, London.