The Sharing Hub, a startup accelerator solely focused on helping so-called ‘sharing economy’ is the brain child of the founders and CEOs of four of Australia’s most successful sharing economy outfits: Car Next Door’s Will Davies; Steve Orenstein of Zoom2U; Alexis Soulopoulos of Mad Paws; and Spacer.com.au’s Mike Rosenbaum.
Seoul mayor Park Won has been promoting his “sharing city’ project. The idea of which is to foster local startups that will ultimately breakup economic dependence on Korean giants like Samsung and LG, whose sheer dominance over the economy and politics have even played a role in the crippling scandal surrounding President Park Geun-hye. Yet the mayor’s vision of the sharing economy has been at stark odds with large global startups that tried unsuccessfully to shake things up with Korea.
Despite economic uncertainty caused by Brexit, the sharing economy is flourishing in the UK, according to recent PwC analysis. Five of the UK’s biggest sharing economy sectors are expected to grow by as much as £8 billion this year alone. Looking ahead, peer-to-peer transportation is expected to remain the largest sector; however, on-demand household services that PwC says will be the fastest to grow in the sharing economy sector.
There’s been a flurry of activity among startups that offer dog walking, dog watching and other dog-related services. There’s Fetch, DogHero, BorrowMyDoggy, HouseMyDog, BabelBark, Baubnb, HappyTail and then there is dog-sitting platform Rover which acquired a dog-boarding company DogVacay in an all-stock deal at an undisclosed price. However, whether you deal in houses or cars or food or pets, success in the sharing economy almost universally involves getting laws changed. In the US, many states have legal definitions of “kennel” that apply to even a modest pet-sitting operation and it seems at-home dog watching is currently more tightly regulated in Colorado than at-home child care.
What happens when you need luxury jewelry without wanting to buy it? The recently funded jewelry borrowing startup that’s the newest entrant into sharing economy is founded by serial entrepreneur Cormac Kinney. The Flont platform features the ability to rent fine jewelry from leading brands like Asprey, Buccellati and Tiffany & Co. Every piece can be rented and then purchased. For a few hundred bucks a month, you can “flont” thousands of dollars’ worth of jewelry.
Running a co-living company is not the same business model as a tech startup; the ethos of embracing the sharing economy to disrupt an industry gives them an unmistakable common thread. Hence, Common, Ollie etc., along with WeWork itself are all startups, which are hungry to become to co-living what WeWork is to co-working – that is, a company valued at $17 billion with more than 100 locations in more than a dozen countries. But complicating matters is their inspiration itself; WeWork launched its WeLive residential concept with hundreds of apartments in two of its converted office spaces, but it has not lived up to that strong beginning.