Coworking Sites Bring Freelancers Together, Provide Support

SHYMKENT – Two business incubators, also called coworking sites, were officially opened in the South Kazakhstan regional youth centre with the support of the Service Centre of Businesses (SCB).

Coworking is a model of work in which participants, though remaining independent and free, use a common space for their activities. There is a separate space for collaboration.

The founder of the coworking movement in 2005 was young American programmer Brad Newberg. Having rented a large room in an office building, he proposed having other freelancers use it with him.

“Today there are more than 770,000 young people aged 14-29 in our region,” oblast Deputy Governor Saparbek Tuyakbaev said.

“This is a big army of would-be entrepreneurs and businessmen. To support young entrepreneurs today we are opening coworking centres. Coworking offices are convenient for freelancers and companies with employees who live and work in different cities or countries. In particular, common offices may be the optimal solution for those who are just entering into markets new to them and don’t have the budget to rent a full office,” Tuyakbaev added.

The coworking centres do not impose any special restrictions on the profession or the status of the participant. Participants in the coworking movement act in the spirit of their colleagues: they share their experiences and ideas on common websites.

“The coworking centres promote entrepreneurship among young people and the exchange of experiences between the older and the younger generation. Creating this centre, we faced a number of challenges and studied the experience of other countries where such centres showed good results,” Director of the SCB in South Kazakhstan oblast Nurzhan Altayev said.

“We also involved in business incubators for young people with business ideas and innovative projects,” Altayev continued. “All projects, including start-ups or existing businesses, in this centre will receive the full support of the service centre of business. For example, if a young person wants to start his or her own business, he or she will be offered training on specific topics or help to resolve legal, tax, accounting, financial and other issues.”

“We plan to hold a monthly fair of projects where future young entrepreneurs will be able to present their ideas to leaders of large and medium size businesses,” Altayev said.

In the future, the organisers plan to open similar centres in other districts. Among the sponsors supporting this idea are NGO Zerde, Ordabasy Kus, Kazakhtelecom and Shymkent Innovation.

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