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Startup Fills Unused Office Areas With Like-Minded Tenants

This story appears in the September 2013 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Ever want to see a startup's momentum slow to a crawl? Watch its founders search for their first office. David Mandell, CEO of Boulder, Colo.-based PivotDesk, says he sees too many people spend too much time looking for space and haggling with landlords. PivotDesk, itself a new startup, wants to mitigate this speed bump by playing matchmaker for office space, helping fledgling companies find the right digs by connecting them with other businesses that are locked into long-term leases and have floor space to spare.

"Commercial real estate typically forces you into a three- to five-year lease, but a startup doesn't know how big it will be in three months, let alone three years," Mandell says. "We take the risk out of a lease by giving a company that signed one the opportunity to gain revenue from any excess space, and then take it back when it needs to expand."

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