Caixin
May 09, 2018 05:38 PM
BUSINESS & TECH

China’s Coworking Space Gets New Occupant

Singaporean property developer CapitaLand Inc. has entered the already crowded coworking-space market in China. Photo: VCG
Singaporean property developer CapitaLand Inc. has entered the already crowded coworking-space market in China. Photo: VCG

Competition in China’s coworking space is heating up as a new entrant from Singapore opened its first location in Shanghai this week.

CapitaLand Ltd., Singapore’s largest commercial property developer, announced the opening on Monday, touting red-hot online video site Bilibili Inc. as one of its first tenants.

Bilibili, which just floated shares in New York in late March to a much fanfare, has rented spaces from CapitaLand to cope with its business expansion, the developer said in a statement.

Bilibili didn’t name other tenants, but said its new facility features new technologies such as facial recognition, as well as more mundane amenities such as a cafeteria, a gym and shower rooms. The 2,700-square-meter (29,060-square-foot) space is at the Innov Center in Shanghai’s Yangpu district.

“CapitaLand owns and manages 180 projects in 41 cities in China. We intend to transform from a traditional developer into one that also offers leading property management services and operations,” the statement said.

The real estate developer didn’t specify how many coworking spaces it plans to launch in China in the near term. However, the Singaporean company’s foray is set to compete head-to-head with larger rivals WeWork and Ucommune, which have had a firmer foothold.

U.S. operator WeWork Companies Inc. announced in April it would acquire local competitor Naked Hub, in a deal reportedly worth $400 million.

The deal was set to add 26 sites from Naked Hub to WeWork’s existing 16 locations across China.

Top Chinese player Ucommune responded by vowing it would “take its own action” on mergers and acquisitions. Previously known as UrWork, Ucommune has already gobbled up three smaller domestic players — Hongtai New Space, Woo Space and Wedo Union — over a span of 12 months.

Contact reporter Jason Tan (jasontan@caixin.com)

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