Apparently, the time of launching new businesses from your kitchen table or from coffee shops is old-school already. Expensive art pieces, gourmet cafeterias and cocktail parties are no longer a luxury offered only at big corporate offices. Coworking spaces are the trend now where entrepreneurs all over the world can enjoy such and even better amenities. In fact, these places are turning into something more than just a “coworking” space. People visit them not only to work on their new business idea, but to socialize with like-minded folks, attend various events, learn, grow and create.
Bulgaria is not falling behind with this trend. The coworking spaces in the country are some of the most preferred places by foreigners because most (if not all) of the guests speak English, and many events are held entirely in English as well. Some of the most popular coworking spaces in Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria, are:
SOHO is a place for art, and “a meeting point for culture and modern urban colouring,” as Luba Hristova, Founder and CEO of SOHO, describes it. Suitable for freelancers, entrepreneurs and professionals from the creative sector, this coworking space offers a cosy and inspiring atmosphere where guests could also relax.
“That’s what we stand for – being creative and productive while having a good time and enriching ourselves professionally, culturally and personally.”
SOHO offers a wide range of events, too – from professional talks, through workshops, yoga and ballet classes, to art exhibitions and charitable initiatives. Guests’ nationalities vary from all around the world. One could find a rich palette of spoken languages there, Luba says, and adds,
“We get one of the best feedbacks from them (international visitors). Maybe because they are more used to that kind of working space and appreciate it more fully.”
init Lab is a place for techies who are all about learning new skills and improving. They organize various events such as workshops, hackathons and meetings on programming, system administration, game development, personal development, music (they even have their own recording studio!), and why not.
According to Anton Ruzhekov, freelance web developer, entrepreneur and a member of the Lab,
“Our typical guests are developers, system administrators, designers, hardware engineers, support specialists, QAs – basically the full spectrum of tech-oriented people. At some of the events, there are people in marketing, advertising, artists, copywriters and many more. We spend our time eating, sharing our work experience, feedback and guidance, playing computer and board games, improving init Lab, and planning future events and conferences.
We have had many visitors from various hackerspaces in Europe and with their help we managed to improve the place. We are also working on translating our website and wiki in English.”
betahaus is a place of high ceilings, vast spaces, and inspiring and innovative people. It’s the first coworking space in Bulgaria, and is also a part of a global network of spaces in Berlin, Barcelona and Hamburg.
“betahaus| sofia brings together the best from the creative scene in Bulgaria – startups, founders, freelancers, VCs and innovators from all sectors,” according to Elizabeth Lazarova, team member of betahaus| sofia.
The place offers a huge variety of events to meet the needs of the diversified crowd, such as: Betapitch (startup events), community events, workshops, skillsharings, and more. Of course, English is spoken there, and, according to Elizabeth, 30% of the visitors who rent desks are foreigners.