A space[cubed] for new businesses

As many businesses around WA are being hit hard by COVID-19, companies like Spacecubed are helping start-ups pave the way to re-grow the economy.

Offices are run by Spacecubed to help start-up businesses. Photo: Nicole Lyttle.

Spacecubed Head of Program Isabelle Goldfarb says the largest issue businesses have to deal with right now is uncertainty, however start-ups already have an advantage.

“No-one knows how to deal better with uncertainty than a start-up,” she says.

Isabelle Goldfarb gives advice to new businesses. Photo: Supplied.

Ms Goldfarb says teaching start-up methodologies through Spacecubed programs allows new businesses to adapt within the current climate. 

“All these methodologies of being more agile, responding quickly, understanding the demand and understanding the market; if you have to do big shifts and quick pivots the start-up methodology applies quite well,” she says.

“In a situation like COVID, using digital and using rapidly shifting methodologies are a great way for any company of any size to thrive.”

Markr Systems CEO and project director David Smith says being a part of a Spacecubed program has added focus to their business venture by allowing them to engage with mentoring and workshops to adapt to the current climate.

“There has been a shift in culture in terms of the way that people work together,” he says.

 “It’s actually quite nice to be part of that.”

David Smith talks about the business benefits of the pandemic. Video: Nicole Lyttle.

Mr Smith says this culture shift may create more opportunity for his start-up business, and other start-ups around WA.

“There’s less of an expectation or a reliance that you are going to go down the conventional paths of getting an office in the city and those kind of things,” he says.

“The pressure is off from a commercial perspective, from a certain extent. 

“So, provided you can survive, it can be an opportunity for some people.”

Markr using time during the pandemic to develop their business. Video: Supplied.

University of Western Australia Winthrop Business Professor Tim Mazzarol also believes that start-ups could benefit from the current business climate.

“There is always opportunity in adversity,” he says.

“Some of the greatest fortunes of the late 20th century were made, or started, in the depths of the Great Depression.”

Professor Mazzarol says the key to finding these fortunes is by exploiting the opportunities and resources businesses are given.

“This is not easy, and there is no guarantee of success, but adaptive and innovative new ventures are what typically emerges from an economic, environmental or social crisis,” he says.

Gemma Rasmussen gives advice to businesses and the community. Photo: Supplied

Mozo Head of Media Gemma Rasmussen says this start-up success is important as small businesses are essential for the Australian economy.

“They offer a diversity and provide different ways for people to spend their money,” she says.

“They also provide the diversity of employment opportunities, so it allows for a range of different workers across different sectors to remain employed which is really important.”