Miro Miroslavov is the co-founder and CEO of OfficeRnD, a coworking and hybrid space managing software company founded in 2015. When OfficeRnD started, many told them they were creating a solution that had no problem. Since the pandemic, coworking and hybrid working have boomed and management software hasn’t been more critical.
In any field, creating a startup is a risk. But Miro believes that it is the effort that one puts behind it that makes it a success.
Miro studied computer science at the University of Sofia and sees himself as a software engineer by heart and trade. After graduating, he started his career at a startup called Telerik (now Progress). Miro was part of the company when it started growing, where he and his partner got the idea for OfficeRnD.
“During this process of high growth and agility in the tech world, we figured that there is a need for a different and better workplace management software,” says Miro.
This is when they saw the gap for a solution to make running and operating workspaces more efficient, significantly larger offices and hybrid working environments.
Knowing enough space for everyone is essential, but other admin duties must also be handled.
So, OfficeRnD was born and hasn’t stopped growing since.
The start of OfficeRnD
Tech companies often have an ethos of agility, and having to use a static and rigid work environment often causes a clash due to different styles in work. “Flexible work environments suit tech companies better,” explains Miro.
“We always felt like we’re trying to squeeze something that’s super dynamic and flexible, which is the workforce, into something that’s static, which is the office in a very traditional form,” says Miro.
Not just that, but tech companies tend to grow super fast, so they often outgrow their offices. Looking at that, Miro realised that there must be another solution.
This is how Miro found coworking; since then, it has offered him everything he ever needed. He couldn’t start his business with his partner in a flexible space, but it has offered him space to grow.
At this time, the OfficeRnD team realised that coworking needed more office management software than traditional offices.
“So we thought there should be a better and more transparent and more flexible way to manage these processes of working and managing the workplace,” says Miro. “So we developed an idea and decided to start working on this problem to manage what we call agile workplaces.”
A week after they started, they posted their idea into a startup website directory. They got a call from an accelerator in London to pitch their idea and get funding for it. “Part of the deal was to relocate to the UK and we incorporated in the UK and started there,” says Miro.
The accelerator helped them tremendously in the process, especially when thinking about the concept of fundraising as a whole. “I mean, for two software engineers from Eastern Europe, the accelerator in London helped us understand better how fundraising works, how to prepare a pitch deck and how to pitch it, and things like what venture capital is,” explains Miro.
“For us, it was a real eye-opening experience. Because what we’ve been doing is writing code and building products but even at the accelerator, they’ve been joking with us in the beginning that we are building a solution that’s looking for a problem,” says Miro.
They started using a coworking space called Second Home “which at the time was one of the most iconic coworking spaces in literally the whole world.” Miro was even lucky enough to bump into Sir Richard Branson, founder of the Virgin group, when making use of the coworking space.
That is what changed everything for Miro. “That completely changed our perception of the workplace. Essentially, we fell in love with the idea of coworking.
It was the most amazing thing we’ve ever seen when it comes to offices, and we decided to focus our entire attention to build a very specific niche: coworking space management software,” says Miro.
The first OfficeRnD customer was Grant Powell, which gave Miro and his partner the confidence boost that they needed to continue with their venture and create products for coworking spaces.
Today OfficeRnD caters to over a thousand clients, which adds up to over three thousand locations in over 80 countries. The OfficeRnD team has grown to over 140 people, with offices in Bulgaria, London, Melbourne, Australia, Atlanta, Boston, and Dallas.
Tips for future entrepreneurs
The best tip Miro can give upcoming startup owners is to read a lot.
He recommends reading The Mom Test by Rob Fitzpatrick. “It’s a very methodical way to look into entrepreneurship,” explains Miro. Another book that Miro recommends is Disciplined Entrepreneurship: 24 Steps to a Successful Startup which has helped him a lot tremendously during his journey.
Miro also recommends being around similar-minded people. Go to coworking spaces and spend time with other entrepreneurs. Hear what they have to say and ask questions.
Coworking is all about community; having other entrepreneurs in such short reach is just a bonus.
In London, there are events that entrepreneurs can attend to help them grow. Silicon Drinkabout is a global community of startups powered by local events. Each city is run by passionate volunteers, fuelled by their love of bringing people together to create meaningful, face-to-face relationships. Tech London allows entrepreneurs to connect immediately with creative entrepreneurs, startups, investors, design agencies, internet marketers & freelancers – all the primary movers and shakers in Tech City.
In April, OfficeRnD will co-produce the London Coworking Assembly’s breakfast show, titled: The Ecosystem of Startups in London, a workshop held at University College London on Tuesday, 18 April, from 9:30 – 11:00. RSVP here to join the free event and meet other entrepreneurs and business owners.