Sook – up 342%

“Affordable and adaptable space for any business”.

The company

Sook provides a 21st century solution to the need for space for commercial purposes, but also for spaces to host events, community initiatives, charity and awareness events, and much more. To this end it facilitates flexible design, creation and short-term use of spaces in some of the UKs busiest commercial centres, allowing customers to book as much or as little time in a space as they need. It allows businesses and organisations to choose and design their space in advance, making use of customisable digital displays for video branding and messaging in-store, and offers modular fit out options to set up the space as needed, from hanging rails to furniture and shelving.

Currently, Sook has spaces available across the UK, from London to Edinburgh, Cambridge and Newcastle, with spaces opening soon in Leeds, Birmingham and Southampton.

uk startup sook

The numbers

Access invested in Sook in February 2020, co-investing alongside a super angel with a flat average CAGR of 49%, and investments in Bink, Synthace, and Stratagem Technologies amongst others

Insights from the Founder, John Hoyle:

SyndicateRoom: How are you feeling about the progress Sook has made so far, and what are your plans for the future?

John Hoyle: Sook has exceeded all of our expectations. What started as a social venture aiming to revitalise the high street has stumbled onto a global opportunity. We have site opportunities in four continents, are working with some of the biggest brands in the world, and our growing team of 50 is constantly having to react to new and bigger opportunities.

SR: What have been some of the biggest challenges you’ve had to deal with?

JH: The pandemic has had an enormous impact upon our business but now, having survived it, we have a much bigger opportunity than existed in 2019. Otherwise we face all the normal challenges of startups: changing attitudes in traditionally conservative industries and dealing with the pressures of rapid growth

SR: What’s the next key milestone you’d like to hit?

JH: Our 1,000th occupier is imminent. I'm also looking forward to opening our first international sites very soon.

SR: What are your main goals for the next 12 months?

JH: To at least treble our sales and number of sites.

SR: If you could go back in time, is there anything you would do differently as a founder?

JH: I would have liked to have had the confidence to launch without the 'help' of an accelerator programme; been more ruthless when we needed to reorganise the team structure; and not bothered talking to VCs until we had over £1m in ARR.

SR: What advice would you give to other founders in the early stages of starting a business?

JH: Launch! You can't research your way to success. Get a product out there. Start selling and iterate.

Find out more about Sook on its website.

Find out more about our fund, Access EIS.

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