If you’re in and around the Atlanta tech scene, you’ve probably heard the rumblings about the new TechRise startup office hub that will soon occupy 3405 Piedmont in Buckhead. The newest project of founder-turned-investor Greg Benoit, TechRise will be located directly next to the Atlanta Tech Village and is intended for slightly more mature, financially-stable startups.
Everyone from real estate experts to the most established founders in town are excited about TechRise — but why? What’s different about this space that will set it apart from both the traditional office building and the increasingly-prevalent co-working spaces?
As per usual when it comes to tech, it’s all about the numbers — in this case those of TechRise’s lease terms.
Companies that take up resident at TechRise can commit to as short as a 6-month or one-year lease term. For a startup that doesn’t know exactly what its growth trajectory will be in even a few months time, that’s much more realistic than the traditional multi-year leases of most buildings.
“For a company that’s just moving out of ATV or a co-working space, still trying to predict growth and predict revenue, a 3-year lease may be a hard pill to swallow,” says Patrick Braswell, CEO of Transcend, the commercial real estate brokerage firm that has taken on the job of transforming and leasing TechRise.
“You’re at this tipping point where you do want to start building your own culture, but you just don’t know exactly where you’ll be or who you’ll be in a year. TechRise is providing a bridge for these companies. That doesn’t exist anywhere in this city right now.”
Braswell says Transcend’s unique perspective and process — namely, a focus on the culture of its spaces, made it a perfect fit for TechRise.
“Transcend thinks about real estate differently than traditional real estate firms,” says Braswell. “We truly believe that culture is what separates businesses, and we believe that space should reflect that culture. This is giving people the ability to continue to grow and not be hindered by physical space.”
This was a challenge that Benoit initially faced in his own startup journey, says Braswell.
“It is a massive burden for companies to have to sign those longer leases. Greg has a very compelling story where he experienced this at the beginning of Qgenda, where he basically moved out of his parents basement and had to sign a 5-year lease.
“Then a year later he needed more space, but they couldn’t get space on the same floor, so now he had two separate spaces,” says Bramwell. “And then a year later he had to do the same thing, so now they’ve got three suites on three different floors. It hinders the ability for the company to grow as fast as they want it to grow and especially to build their own culture.”
Companies that move into TechRise will have the option, if they scale faster or slower than initially expected, to change their space to reflect that after just 6 months. It’s an attractive option, and Braswell says he has already been approached by 5 companies to be put on a waiting list, along with several brokers.
TechRise is expected to open to new tenants in anywhere from 4-12 months. Hype can’t wait to check it out!