Tiny homes may have lost some of their luster in the Covid era, but a new future for remote working may require smaller offices.
According to Nick Foley, Resident Founders and CEOs, people these days are demanding a quiet space to think – and they are happy to pay for it.
Foley is the former chief product officer and director of industrial design for Jump Bikes, a bike-sharing company that was acquired by Uber in 2018 for $200 million. With Denizen, he’s setting out to answer a question: “Can you create an office space as a product that’s an extraordinary experience for a single person to have an entire workday?”
Foley thinks WeWork got some mistakes in how to optimize the work environment. While many people reap the social benefits of co-working, an environment full of workers focusing on different projects can be detrimental to the kind of flow that some work requires.
Denizen’s solution is to build a small army of already built-in small standalone offices, equipped with outlets, USB plugs, cameras (for videoconferencing), speakers, an integrated router, and even a whiteboard wall. All in less than 100 square feet. . Denizen’s office pods are beautifully designed, with windows that can be opaque in seconds for privacy, recyclable materials, and an aesthetic that’s right at home in Dwell (they really were Dwell now. featured in, because they certainly were).
“The ceilings are really high, the glass is all around you – it just feels spacious and spacious,” Foley said, adding that Denijn is all about giving people the tools they need to have a “motivated, productive workday.” . And they’re not just a pretty concept image—a friend of Foley’s who works for NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory gave us a virtual tour of his own Denizen-built micro workspace.
Denizen initially planned to only provide its pre-fab office pods to employers, who could rent them on a monthly subscription basis. But the demand for those working from home and those looking for alternatives was so high that the company is now planning to sell standalone offices to individuals who can keep them at their home. One of Denizen’s beautiful, high-tech small offices will set you back about $55K as an individual.
Foley sees the Denizen model as something that will fit into the company’s post-Covid-era real estate plan. With fewer employees flocking to the office, companies are ditching the expensive and often sprawling campuses that have long defined them and are looking to explore more flexible, bespoke alternatives that will help shape the future of work. are better. For an employer with a wholesale deal, Foley expects each SmartPod to run around $1,000 a month to rent.
Pods may complement traditional offices with inspiring single office settings, but Foley hopes that someday companies or even city governments can place clusters of denizen office pods in green spaces where they can be used for the day. Can be booked in
“The real dream is honestly the same as Jump Bike… figuring out how to collaborate on a neighborhood level to create these really amazing shared use features,” Foley said.
The company is currently seeking further funding and signing up companies in the Bay Area and California for multi-unit trials to begin in early 2022. It is looking to scale up gradually, selling around 100 units over the next year while it streamlines manufacturing experience to get the product right.
Because the SmartPods are on wheels, Denizon cleverly avoids the many permissive headaches that Foley’s team would otherwise have stuck with. “I understand how this can be a complication for a business model,” says Foley, citing his experience setting up kiosks and parking. Structures for jump bikes.
Instead of navigating the labyrinthine local regulations, anyone with a 12- to 7.5-foot area and cash extra can roll into one of the smaller pod offices and go to work. From a regulatory standpoint, it’s basically a pretty little RV, with no plumbing.
Foley is excited about how his vision fits into the future of work, but he’s also excited about the literal nuts and bolts of putting together Denizen’s small offices. Production for Pod Office combines large-scale CNC automation, 3D printing and sophisticated product design into one product that is pre-fabricated and ready to ship to Denizen’s early customers on the West Coast, wheels and all.