I want to make Hubs because I believe collaborative spaces can empower people to re-imagine society.
My first hurdle is the business plan. The first attempt identified significant risk in the opportunity. So I’ve decided to seek a proof of concept to demonstrate the model for return and so attract investors.
This line of enquiry led me to the Hub Association. Their model has been around since 2005. It’s dedicated to the power of innovation through collaboration. And looks very close to the Mewoki Hubs I’ve imagined for years. So I’m clearly not alone in this vision of seeing people achieve more together.
The Hub Association operate a franchise model with royalty fee. Most Hubs are still in start up mode. It’s to early to guarantee any self-sufficiency but the current estimate is 75% of Hubs will reach break-even by year 2.
The Association has a selection process for Hub candidates to pass through before joining their network.
Aside from approvals and staged progress, viability of the model, basically lies in attracting 200+ paying members.
I wanted to see how this all works, so I recently travelled to Australia to see Hub Melbourne in action.
@HubMelbourne was co-founded by Brad Krauskopf in 2010 after helping launch HubMadrid and deciding Australia could do with the same.
Hub Melbourne is almost a tech incubator but I’m assured many of the residents are cross industry and the focus is more on social entrepreneurs than disruptive start ups. For me, that’s a good thing, I’m looking for disruption but also cohesion. I’m going to keep in touch with the Hub. It’s a great place. Collaborative open space, awash with natural light, media technology and lots of imaginative chatter.