“You are crazy” that’s what my grandmother loves to say of me for starting a company in Uruguay,” says Macarena Botta, Co-Founder and Executive Director of Sinergia Co-Work in Montevideo, Uruguay. “But I’m doing what I love. What else could I ask for?”
At Sinergia, their mission is to democratize entrepreneurship for the Uruguayan entrepreneurial community. “Before co-working spaces arrived to Montevideo (Sinergia was the first!), the entrepreneurial ecosystem was a bit elitist,” explains Macarena. “You had to know certain contacts to get into the community. With Sinergia, we wanted to create a space where we could democratize entrepreneurship. We wanted to create a place where entrepreneurs and freelancers could come together as a community.”
In order to develop a sense of community, the co-working space has been developed to encourage networking among the members. “From yoga classes to workshops on accounting and sales, we provide activities each day that encourage networking between entrepreneurs.” Sinergia also has spaces where members come together to socialize like a terrace for asados, chill zones, ping pong tables, and an inside café where entrepreneurs can chat.
“The cool thing about co-working spaces, especially Sinergia, is that they shorten the entrepreneurial learning path because you share stories and experiences with other entrepreneurs,” explains Macarena. “It’s about learning from other’s mistakes and successes. It also makes being an entrepreneur feel a lot less lonely.”
While Sinergia only began a year ago, they have already added an incubator to their list of services and have plans to open a second co-working space geared towards the tech and robotics industry in the next couple months. “We hope to have five additional co-working spaces in Uruguay within the next five years.” Luckily, Marcena just might be crazy enough to make it all happen.