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Couch-Surfing but for Offices; Hot Desk Launches in Egypt to Help Entrepreneurs Monetise Empty Desks

Have you ever gone desk-surfing?

Hotdesk, an Egyptian startup incorporated in the U.S., just launched in Cairo and is expected to unveil its app in the coming few days. "The problem is that [entrepreneurs] usually don’t have much budget at Seed phase," Co-founder and CEO Mohamed Khaled tells Startup Scene.

"So instead of them worrying about commitments and rent contracts - we’re enabling them to tap into the benefits of the Sharing Economy and book instantly usable offices at a much better pricing and flexibility." Hotdesk is an online platform for workspaces. It connects hosts with extra office spaces, to users that are looking for a place to work.

At Hotdesk, there are two types of hosts: office owners with extra space and co-working spaces. The app maps out all listed co-working spaces for users on one app. This means Users can easily search and flick through them, comparing prices, ratings, images, amenities, and more. Searches can be based on location, such as checking ones near you or in another country that you’re planning to travel to, based on available times and spaces, or even be based on whether they have Wifi and free coffee.

Moreover, Hotdesk reaches into an untapped market, by giving office owners the opportunity to list extra spaces which they are not using onto the market. Since these businesses are already running for another purpose - and using this as a method for being economical - they will be able to provide customers with great prices, which would definitely be a favourable option for startups and freelancers.

Hosts can list their Workspaces on Hotdesk for free. The benefits they receive are increase in customer inflow, more online exposure, enabling online bookings, and access to an online payment system. Pretty much like how Airbnb works, Hotdesk only receives commision when a customer successfully books and pays.

Hotdesk uses functionalities from tech giants like Google, to enable Google Powered searches and Google Maps navigation. Using Stripe as its trusted payment gateway provider, the app enables a payment network across the globe, and customers can make payments securely from more than 200 countries.

The startup is co-founded by Khaled, Ali Shewki, and Mohamed ElSarrag, who together built Hotdesk’s app with a combination of developers across Finland and Ukraine. The app has been designed in a simple and minimalistic way, taking customers from “Find a Space” to “Booking Completed” in three clicks, and enabling hosts to list their spaces in three minutes.

"Commercial real estate rental prices in Cairo is a hefty expense for business owners," the CEO adds. We’re here to help lift these strains off their backs - by enabling them to be efficient and make use of these extra spaces as well as generating extra income to help pay rent."

The Platform is available worldwide, currently operating in eight cities across three continents. However, the team is focusing on operations in their hometown Cairo, as well as Barcelona and Toulouse.


You can check their website here

Image: A girl works at CO-55, a picturesque co-working space in Eastern Cairo. 


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