Oxford Street startup now in the Big League
An online ‘what’s on’ start-up company given a leg-up by the City of Sydney has successfully expanded and outgrown its Oxford Street creative space and has now moved to much larger offices.
AroundYou.com.au was one of 16 creative and cultural tenants that moved into underutilised City-owned properties on Oxford Street at affordable rates early this year, with the aim of revitalising the area and helping small businesses grow.
Having moved into the Oxford Street premises in January, AroundYou subsequently experienced massive growth, boosting the number of sales representatives from three to 11 in just eight months, and is now employing 30 more team members.
AroundYou co-founder Martin Orliac said the affordable rent on Oxford Street had allowed the company to focus on redeveloping its website and building-up products and the team.
“The affordable rent was very important for us because we didn’t have much revenue when we moved in and at that stage every dollar counted,” Mr Orliac said.
“This allowed us to allocate dollars to business development, growing our product and to focus on marketing – all the aspects that have helped us make a bigger business, without having to worry about rent, which is normally unavoidable in other situations.”
Mr Orliac said the AroundYou.com team had enjoyed their time at 66 Oxford Street because of the camaraderie they shared with other tenants and the area’s vibrant café and small bar scene.
“A lot happened in that Oxford Street space and we are quite nostalgic about it,” Mr Orliac said.
“But that is also the reason we are moving out: we have increased the number of sales representatives so we could increase our revenue, and the space was just not big enough for us anymore.”
The exit of AroundYou from 66 Oxford Street provides an opportunity for the next creative enterprise to access affordable workspace in Oxford Street.
The City is now working with an eligible organisation, which applied during the expression of interest period last year, to get them up and running in the space.