New affordable workspace could be transformative for Shoreditch and Hoxton businesses

Workspace for Hackney residents and businesses to rent on a pay-as-you-go basis for £15 a day is now a reality in Shoreditch, thanks to the opening of a co-working space aimed at helping entrepreneurs, freelancers and small businesses develop and grow.

Earlier this year, the Council entered into a low-cost lease until 2047 for genuinely affordable workspace in Plough Yard - part of the wider Principal Place development, which is home to Amazon’s UK headquarters and on land owned by the Council. The space is a result of investment into the area and part of a hard negotiated Section 106 agreement for Principal Place, which is a planning obligation to ensure developments provide community benefits. 

Submissions to manage the workspace came from organisations and business support groups on the Council's approved affordable workspace provider list. Following a competitive evaluation process, Plexal was selected to run the space - the organisation is best-known for establishing an innovation centre at the Here East campus in Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park to support local businesses and organisations.

As well as offering affordable desk space, Plexal has launched a business accelerator programme at the Shoreditch site, open to those working in all sectors and industries. The “Grown in Hackney” programme will target Hackney businesses in the local area to benefit from bespoke, dedicated support, not only helping them develop their businesses, but with the aim of creating new jobs and apprenticeships for local residents. Plexal and Hackney Business Network will also run events on-site aimed at engaging and advising local businesses.

Plexal Shoreditch is part of the Council’s commitment to make Hackney’s economy open, accessible and inclusive, by championing and supporting local business and social enterprise in Hackney through affordable workspace and ensuring Hackney remains at the creative centre of London. Businesses and residents in the Shoreditch area told the Council that affordable workspace, protecting Shoreditch's character and supporting small businesses were important to them - the aim of the space is to help businesses work and create together and for residents to be able to access high quality support and opportunities to learn new skills and boost career opportunities.

 Philip Glanville, Mayor of Hackney

The Council is delighted to welcome Plexal to Shoreditch, which will provide huge benefits for a growing network of talented entrepreneurs and developing businesses and ensure the area continues to be the creative heart of London. This new workspace is part of our commitment to create an open, accessible and inclusive economy in Hackney, whereby residents and local businesses are the first to benefit from economic growth and where smaller and larger businesses can learn and develop side-by-side.

By ensuring any new developments in the borough include affordable workspace and converting our own buildings to provide workspace, we will continue to do everything possible to support the needs and ambitions of residents and local businesses.

Philip Glanville, Mayor of Hackney

We’re thrilled to officially celebrate the launch of Plexal Shoreditch – a passion project that’s been many months in the making. Maintaining the ethos of our Here East co-working space, where entrepreneurs can collaborate and innovate together, the Shoreditch site reaffirms our commitment to providing local founders with an affordable hub from which they can create, build and thrive.

We’re proud to be part of such a lively and ambitious ecosystem and look forward to supporting the East London innovators who join our Grown in Hackney programme, helping them to unlock further prosperity for the area.

Andrew Roughan, CEO at Plexal

Plexal Shoreditch features more than 20 desk spaces which are available for Hackney residents and businesses at £15-a-day or £20-a-day for Plexal members, who can benefit from using the facilities at both the Shoreditch site and at Here East. There is also flexible seating and meeting spaces.

Find out more about renting a space

Find out more about Plexal’s Grown in Hackney programme