Investing in Codi

If you’ve run a high-growth company, you know that office space decisions are a nightmare. You are forced to anchor your growth assumption in cement–literally–for a typical lease term of seven years.

Most companies try to take down enough space to JUST BARELY accommodate their anticipated employee base in the seventh year. And unfortunately, most every outcome is bad for the company:

  • If your growth assumption is too high, you will under-utilize the space throughout the entire lease term–consuming precious capital in the process.
  • If your growth assumption is too low, you outgrow the space before the lease is up and either need to break the lease (and pay a penalty) or take down a second lease (splitting up your employee base).
  • If you happen to be very lucky and your growth assumption is right, you still under-utilize the space badly in the early years.

I’ve seen this play out across many of the companies that I support. For example, in the 11 years I’ve been a Pinterest board member, they must have signed as many new leases. But it just doesn’t make sense to sign a traditional lease when you’re doubling (or tripling!) your team size every year. And while shared coworking can be great, it’s not an option for the many companies that want or need private, dedicated space to build their product and culture.

This problem has only gotten worse with COVID and hybrid work. How do you plan for THAT?! Capacity utilization at most offices plummeted during COVID and has been slow to recover. Many employees have moved/are moving to new cities. Another pile of employees has stayed, but only want to come to the office a day or two a week. Do you really want to bet on what work is going to look like over the next seven years?

Enter Codi: an “all-in-one” platform that allows companies to spin up private, flexible office spaces. Codi’s goal is to make office space as easy and as plug-and-play as any other part of a company’s outsourced tech stack. The Codi value prop for companies is robust:

  • Flexible: You can book a Codi space for a month, a few years, or anything in between–and choose whether you lease it full time or just a few days a week.
  • Turnkey: The spaces come smartly furnished–customized to a company’s needs and requests – and outfitted with everything from WiFi to coffee.
  • Any neighborhood: Codi has office space all throughout the cities they serve, so you have great odds of finding space in your neighborhood of choice.

Today, we’re excited to announce we’re leading Codi’s Series A round. When we met cofounder and CEO Christelle Rohaut, we were blown away by her vision to reimagine urban work. Christelle has a Master’s degree in City and Urban Planning from Berkeley, and has spent years thinking about how to design and configure spaces that “work” for teams. Christelle and co-founder Dave Schuman hope to make Codi their life’s work!

Codi is live in the Bay Area, New York, and Austin, with more cities coming soon. Over the past year, the company has grown gross revenue 22x and 10x their number of clients, now serving dozens of businesses of all sizes–from early stage startups to segments of large enterprises. Many of these customers have already extended their time with Codi, or expanded to bigger spaces or additional cities with Codi as their teams have grown.

Codi makes sense for landlords, too, who have clamored to list their spaces on the platform. With commercial space vacancies still near record levels, access to quality, vetted tenants is more important than ever. Because Codi rentals are shorter term, landlords charge more per month than they would on a traditional lease (the companies pay a modest premium for the enhanced flexibility). The experience is turnkey for landlords as well, as Codi handles customer service and outfits the space.

A new era of work is here, and a new group of generational companies will rise to fill the needs teams are now facing. We believe Codi is leading the way for commercial office space. If you’re looking for office space, request one on www.codi.com–and if they’re not in your market yet, they will be soon!

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