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Release by Ucommune at the China International Fair for Trade in Services: The E-commerce Landscape in Co-working Spaces

The 2020 China International Fair for Trade in Services (CIFTIS) was recently held in Beijing. As the first large scale, offline international trade event in China since the outbreak of COVID, this conference took the approach of blending online and offline by utilising cloud-based digital messaging platforms, to host close to a hundred live broadcasts.

On the morning of September 6, Ucommune represented the co-working industry in China to release its report titled “The E-commerce Landscape in Co-working Spaces”, highlighting Ucommune’s technological advances within its community services and platform. 

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The E-commerce Landscape in Co-working Spaces

As the leading co-working brand in China, Ucommune has combined its deep-rooted understanding of local market dynamics with leading efficiency in space utilization, activity chain capabilities, and management innovation experience to utilize technology in powering a platform to promote a dynamic collaborative work ecosystem.

While systematically expanding its global site footprint, Ucommune has utilized its technological know-how and a professional team with experience in internet and technology sectors to build an integrated management system. This system is powered in combination with its Youxianji app, smart office system, and IOT and data management solutions. The platform then provides front, middle, and backend support to host online and offline services for its members. With the spirit of sharing at its core, technology will continue to power the growing impact of co-working.

Presently, Ucommune utilizes a hybrid cloud methodology to provide round the clock support for the global operations of its IT, IoT, and business systems. With help from the architecture of its open-sourced software, Ucommune is able to utilize microservices in partitioning business logic, combining componentization and a middle platform strategy to realize the separation and re-utilization of core services. A compartmentalized strategy for its frontend and backend also allows for a dynamic front-end that caters to its growing spaces and membership base.

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Ucommune fully launched the operations of its co-working e-commerce platform in 2020. With foresight on the growth of the internet, Ucommune became the first in the industry to receive the combined certification of ICP and EDI operating licenses. With new developments in technology, it has since pioneered a range of innovations and experiments related to the operations and management of co-working.

Ucommune’s e-commerce platform is an independently developed e-commerce system that sits within the Youxianji app, which provides not just the traditional functions of an e-commerce platform but also integrates the unique characteristics of Ucommune’s online and offline communities. These new consumer-targeted e-commerce functions include flash sales, group buying communities, and distributed sales systems, which are then hosted within the app and its mini-programs. At the same time, the platform also targets unique aspects of Ucommune’s business communities to provide a platform for the exchange of B2B intellectual property services.

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By integrating a range of smart office tools, the Youxianji app was able to allow members to manage various aspects of their office usage with ease. These range from conference and desk pre-booking, desk login, control of smart devices, and calendar management. At the same time, the app also provides B2B and B2C services for both individuals and corporations, which include food and travel, human resources, taxation, investments, incubation, and more.  By utilizing a smart office space management and IOT system, the app also is also able to provide for self-service functions such as smart conferences, cloud printing, face recognition door security systems, and other cloud-based security controls.

Utilizing technology, Ucommune was able to break down the barriers between the physical and the virtual, utilizing both its online and offline resources to provide Ucommune members and businesses with office space and expansion services. Ucommune’s efforts in innovation have helped to realize the potential of communities, as well as catalyzing the evolution and growth of a nascent co-working industry by expanding on the possibilities and valuation of co-working industries. The Ucommune brand has grown to exemplify the icon of living in China’s top cities, providing members and businesses with convenient and labor-saving services with peace of mind.

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In the face of the biggest upheaval in recent times, the success of this conference highlights China’s confidence and determination to re-open, positively signaling its commitment to the globalization of the economy and the improvement of international trade cooperation. The conference also presents an opportunity to bridge international communities to create an inclusive environment for collaboration, igniting leading innovative and collaborative capabilities, as well as mutually beneficial cooperation.

During the spread of the epidemic, services such as telemedicine, online education, sharing platforms, collaborative work, and cross-border e-commerce were adopted widely. This was vital in helping to stabilize international economies and promoting international cooperation in epidemic control. The onset of the epidemic also rapidly increased the need for agile and flexible workspaces across all business sectors, allowing for co-working spaces to come into consideration as a new alternative to traditional office spaces. 

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As one of the earliest to resume services, co-working spaces helped numerous corporations to rapidly resume their operations and manufacturing. In the first quarter of 2020, Ucommune onboarded 531 new businesses, serviced 13754 members and increased its number of online members to 114199. After the epidemic, Ucommune will capitalise on technology to continue expanding on its platform and connectivity capabilities in providing member services and promoting the long term growth of businesses in China.

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