Wi-Fi and coffee are brewing up an exciting partnership with the introduction of free Internet in Starbucks. In addition to pleasing caffeine loving college students like me, the ability to sip a latte while surfing the web could be the golden ticket to success for startup companies.
On July 1st Starbucks began offering unlimited free Wi-Fi at its 6,700 company-operated locations in the U.S., prompting tech business writer Matt Shapiro to dub the coffee house, “Startbucks.” Access to tables, chairs, drinks, and Internet means free office space for startups looking to conduct productive meetings while saving money. Founder Howard Schultz said Starbucks is the “third place” of American life, following the home and the office. This ability for the coffee shop to be outside of the bustle of home and the structure of the office makes it the perfect stress-free place for startups to build their foundation.
Benefits of Using a Coffee Shop as Your Startup’s Office in Boston:
- Mayor Menino supports you. Menino has been pushing free Internet access throughout Boston since he announced his Wireless Task Force in 2006. He would be happy to know that wireless coffee shops are helping startups.
- A coffee shop is a neutral ground without the stress of home and the office.
- If you’re at Starbucks, you have free access to certain paid sites such as the Wall Street Journal.
- You won’t run out of office space with over 100 Starbucks in Boston. Also, various coffee houses throughout Boston such as Equal Exchange, 2nd Cup Café, and the Flat Black Coffee Company cafes offer free Wi-Fi.
- Easy commute. With so many coffee shops to choose from, your startup can pick a location close to where you and co-workers live.
- Networking opportunities. Coffee shops are the perfect place to meet new people and share ideas. If you want an outside opinion, simply ask the person drinking coffee next to you.
- Most obvious and best benefit—unlimited caffeine and food.
Can you think of any more reasons why the coffee shop office is beneficial for startups?