TL; DR: Croissant is a coworking program that opens doors to some of the most modern and professional shared workspaces worldwide. Flexible hourly payment plans enable entrepreneurs, freelancers, and remote workers to tailor the service to their needs, whether they’re looking to get out of the house, meet with clients in a professional setting, or facilitate teamwork among groups. By providing members access to more than 500 spaces in 70 cities, including New York, Los Angeles, London, and Lisbon, Croissant is changing the way we work on a global scale.
Anyone who’s had the luxury of working from home is familiar with the perks: Freedom from the rush hour commute; pajamas all day, every day; and all the canine companionship one could wish for.
Still, being in the same house without a break gets tiresome. To escape the monotony, many remote workers throw on something half decent and hit up the nearest Starbucks, where they pay for their stay in Frappuccinos and pastries. But between spotty wifi, passive-aggressive battles over wall chargers, and overpriced coffee, the environment isn’t always ideal.
Like many entrepreneurs, freelancers, and remote workers, the four friends behind Croissant lived this truth — and knew they could do better. Eventually, they came up with a winning idea: to create a service that allows users to pay for a seat at the hottest coworking spaces around — instead of purchasing yet another croissant to justify a seat at the café.
In 2015, the aptly-named Croissant was born. Today, membership with the company gives remote workers, freelancers, and entrepreneurs access to approximately 500 coworking spaces in more than 70 cities spanning the globe.
“When you work from home, you’re blurring the lines between work and play, and it can be hard to stay on task,” said Georgette Eva, Community Specialist at Croissant. “For some of our members, just being able to get out of the house and separate your personal space from your professional space helps increase focus.”
The Croissant app, available for iOS and Android, makes it easy to navigate the innovative service, whether you’re looking to meet with clients in a professional setting or find a place for your team to brainstorm. With flexible hourly payment plans and additional locations popping up around the globe on a regular basis, Croissant is making coworking spaces more accessible than ever.
Enjoy Flexible Hourly Payment Options
There’s no doubt that working from home has become increasingly popular in recent years. The number of people working from home — not including the self-employed — has increased by 140% since 2005.
Employees consider the option to work from home a significant benefit. According to 2017 research by Stack Overflow, more than 50% of developers say remote work is a priority when looking for a job. Furthermore, 77% of millennials surveyed by Bentley University in 2017 said telecommuting would increase their productivity.
Georgette said the Croissant team has observed similar trends. “Even large companies are supporting people going remote, either for a few days out of the week or completely,” she said. “We’ve also noticed more and more local coworking spaces popping up, so it seems more people want a place to go when they leave the house.”
And while Croissant may have a few competitors, the company is pulling ahead with a significant differentiator: hourly payment options. Exact prices vary per city, but with the Explorer plan, members receive 10 hours per month with the ability to roll over unused hours. Unlike daily or weekly passes, the hourly option is consumption-based, so you’re only paying for what you use.
“So many people I’ve talked to have said this is exactly what they needed to get out of the house for a few hours,” Georgette said. “I’m based in New York, and I’ve always enjoyed the flexibility our app offers. I can work in a coworking space for two hours in the morning, go run some errands, and then hop back into a coworking space.”
Foster Happier and More Productive Teams
Croissant is also a useful resource for bootstrapped startups that can’t yet afford to rent an office suite. According to the Small Business Administration, entrepreneurs often dig into their own savings accounts to fund their endeavors. Personal and family savings accounts are the most common source of capital used to finance business growth, followed by profits and assets, financial loans, and credit cards.
Considering that 23% of small businesses fail because they simply run out of cash, entrepreneurs must manage their budgets carefully. Croissant gives startups a leg up in this regard by providing affordable solutions for getting a team under one roof.
“Some of our customers are small startups — it could be two to three people or a distributed team of 10 or more,” Georgette said. “At the same time, having the team together and able to focus during those early stages is really important. And offering your remote team members access to dedicated workspace is a great game-changer for any remote team. And Croissant seeks to help with that.”
The company recently created a remote team dashboard that enables teams to add and manage team accounts and hours in one place. The Croissant team itself is remote and distributed, so it uses the app as well.
“We all work remotely, so when we travel, we try to stop at one of the spaces in the city we’re visiting,” Georgette said. “It’s great to be able to use it so we can get an idea of what our users are experiencing.”
Host Clients in a Professional Setting
Like it or not, first impressions matter, especially in the business world. If you’re a freelancer or entrepreneur and you need to meet with a customer in person, a noisy coffee shop or a messy, child-filled home probably won’t cut it.
That’s where Croissant’s guest hours come in. For a small fee, the Explorer plan allows members to bring a guest to any location, while the Creator and Luminary plans include five and 20 free guest hours, respectively. All memberships offer 24/7 access to select workspaces as a verified user, and the ability to unlock doors electronically via the Croissant app.
“One of my favorite stories is from a really cool member who started his company from his bedroom,” Georgette said. “Over time, he began to attract more impressive clients and wanted something a little more professional. Croissant helped him feel more confident in client meetings.”
Georgette said Croissant works closely with its customer base to identify pain points and inform the company’s internal development efforts. Fortunately, she said the user community is remarkably open and eager to offer constructive feedback.
“Everyone is very giving, which I appreciate,” Georgette said. “We really listen to our community and keep a sheet of feedback to help us shape what we should work on and what our community really needs.”
A Presence in 70 Cities and 500 Coworking Spaces
When Georgette first joined the Croissant team, she said most of the company’s coworking spaces were located in New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. Today, two and a half years later, the company has experienced exponential growth.
“We now have a presence in places like Amsterdam, Barcelona, Berlin, Paris, and Madrid,” she said. “We’re in over 70 cities and over 500 spaces at this point — it’s really exciting!”
The company recently added Mexico City to the list and doesn’t intend to stop there.
“We plan to keep expanding and exploring how teams use Croissant to make sure we’re providing the best experience possible,” Georgette said.