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Aun Ngo on StartSpace

A smiling man wearing glasses indoors
12 March 2020

'StartSpace is about providing a space in the Library where people can come in and work on an idea of theirs and really give it a shot. It could be an extremely innovative startup idea, it could be a traditional small business idea. It could be a creative pursuit they want to work on. It could be a social enterprise or social impact idea.

'What excites me is that StartSpace supports people at the very start of the journey and removes barriers so they can enter into the rest of the startup ecosystem. We’re targeting a gap at the very, very early stage of the startup journey. These are people who would not be working at a paid coworking space … yet! 

'Research shows that it’s generally your third or fourth idea that potentially becomes successful. Success will look like a lot of things: members might move onto paid spaces and get into business programs called accelerator programs, which help grow and scale your business.

'Another measure of success would be that, while working on your own idea, you’ll build a suite of skills (for example, in marketing, product design, user testing or digital work – because you're doing everything!) and become very employable.

'To any potential StartSpace member with an idea for a business or project, I’d say: just try to get started. That’s what we’re here to help with. You could try doing it by yourself at home, in a cafe or in the Library anyway … or you can come to a place that specifically supports people at that nascent stage. It literally won’t cost you anything and we have the support, the programming, the events and ultimately the community that will help you in that very early stage.

'There is so much learning from giving it a shot. Not having that constant cash outlay of hiring a full-priced office while you’re learning is such a huge help.

'It’s also about being around other people: they might not be working on exactly the same thing, but there’s that opportunity to bounce ideas, go for a coffee or have conversations and build networks.

'It’s exciting knowing that this could just be the very beginning of a larger project. There’s a lot of potential to scale StartSpace, and it could have some impactful outcomes for both the lives of people who have a business idea and for the Victorian economy.'

Aun Ngo is the hard-working and affable Community Lead for StartSpace, the Library's new coworking space. Visit the StartSpace website to find out more.