eVenues: The Marketplace for Meeting Space

July 18, 2012

11:00 am

The sharing economy. That’s the concept behind sites that allow users to rent out what they own. Airbnb is the best known example, but you don’t have to look far to see the concept in action in other areas. Tools, neckties, parking spaces – these are just a few I’ve seen recently.  Add one more to the sharing economy mix – meeting venues.

eVenues, a startup in Seattle, makes use of underutilized space by making it easily searchable and directly rent-able.  The service is focused on smaller-size rentals (think meetings rather than conferences) – eVenues’ locations range from commercial properties, boutique hotel boardrooms and training classrooms to coffee houses, private dining rooms in restaurants and small clubs/bars.

The service recently expanded search in San Jose and San Francisco – in addition to 25 bookable venues, users can search 450 other venues in the Bay Area. eVenues has offerings in other cities as well such as DC, New York and Chicago and continues to add venues throughout the US to its database.

An across the board increase in smaller-scale events has been a motivator for eVenues, explains David Jennings, CEO and co-founder. “We’ve seen a huge demand in small, affordable spaces, but most people don’t know where to begin. eVenues wants to put all those places under one roof and introduce other time-saving services associated with orchestrating smaller, professional events.”

Startups, volunteer groups, meetups, and other event organizers – eVenues will save you a lot of time. For those that have the space to rent, eVenues offers a new revenue stream for that space. Venue-owners can list with eVenues and receive emails from those interested in renting or can sign up for eVenues direct booking option, in which eVenues processes the entire transaction for the venue, eliminating back and forth emails regarding scheduling. eVenues charges a 10-13% processing fee for the space rental (it varies based on venue size).

Welcome to the sharing economy.

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Marla Shaivitz is a writer, developer and digital marketer. She's interested in innovations & innovators in technology and those working toward social good. Follow Marla on Twitter at @marlashaivitz.