Hive at 55 Honors Tech in Residence Contest Winner

03/29/2011
Hive at 55 Honors Tech in Residence Contest Winner

The Hive at 55, a shared workspace in Lower Manhattan for freelancers and small business owners launched by the Alliance for Downtown New York last December, today named Team Skyline and its BeeMe program the winner of its “Tech in Residence” contest. For its reward, the company will have free, unlimited access to the Hive at 55 this summer. BeeMe is a mobile “loyalty punch card” system for mobile phones that allows small businesses to offer loyal customers incentives for repeat shopping and also allows customers to reap shopping rewards by recommending their favorite stores to friends.

“The Hive at 55 is about new ways of working and BeeMe is a perfect example of the beyond-the-box thinking that goes on here every day,” said Downtown Alliance President Elizabeth H. Berger. “Congratulations to Team Skyline and all Tech in Residence contest competitors.” Two of Skyline’s members began working at the Hive last week. They communicate with their third member, in Japan, via the Skype video service.

“The Hive has been a great fit for us,” said Cameron Cundiff of Skyline and a recent graduate of NYU's Interactive Telecommunications Communications Masters Program.

“We’ve enjoyed having both a focused environment to work in, as well as access to an interesting group of freelancers and entrepreneurs to bounce ideas off of and chat with. We’re looking forward to attending the Hive’s events, sharing resources and getting to know the other teams that share the space. BeeMe is thrilled to have a new Hive!”

The 4,000-square-foot, fully outfitted space at the New York Information and Technology Center at 55 Broad St. includes a shared workspace for more than 30 people, three private offices and meeting space, as well as Wi-Fi, fax, printer and copier machines, coffee, conference rooms and bike storage. Additionally, workshops, classes, happy hours and other networking opportunities are often held there.

Hive at 55 staff selected finalists for the contest and a panel of tech experts led by Jonathan Hill, Associate Professor of Information Technology at Pace University’s Seidenberg School of Computer Science and Information Systems. “BeeMe is a fabulous tool for small businesses to connect with their existing and potential customers while including their friends,” Hill said. “The students behind BeeMe have an intuitive feel for the effective use of the mobile-Web. Their iPhone application will combine the best aspects of social media and local marketing and it will benefit tremendously from being developed in the Hive at 55 around other tech savvy entrepreneurs.”

The Hive at 55 has hosted nearly 50 events, lectures and classes in partnership with Pace, as well as Girls in Tech, GuruLoft and other tech and social media groups. It recently hosted an event on job hunting for journalists featuring world-renowned digital and social media expert Sree Sreenivasan of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. More than 1,600 people have used the space, with 67 regular members, 61 percent average monthly growth and 160 percent growth from January to April. Nineteen percent of Hive members live in Lower Manhattan, but many come from other parts of the city. And while most come to the Hive to work independently, a collaborative community has formed. For example, a Hive-based Web producer redesigned hiveat55.com, another recently hosted a launch party for his company there – www.shopkeep.com – and members regularly collaborate with each other on product development.

The Hive at 55 offers several membership options: $25 per day; three visits per month for $50; eight visits per month for $150; 12 visits per month for $200; monthly access during business hours for $300; and monthly 24/7 access for $500. Private offices and classroom space are also available for rent.

To help establish the Hive at 55, the New York City Economic Development Corporation provided a $100,000 grant to the Downtown Alliance. Additional funding and program support for the Hive are provided by 55 Broad Street, the Rudin family, Poulakakos Family Restaurants (which offer Hive members monthly lunches and happy hours), J&R Music and Computer World (which offer discounts for Hive members), Mancini Duffy, Pace University and Sky-Packets. More information on the Hive at 55 is available by calling the Downtown Alliance at 212-835-2744, on the Web at http://www.hiveat55.com or by e-mail at hiveat55@downtownny.com. Interested parties can also follow the Hive on Twitter at twitter.com/hiveat55 or become fans on Facebook.

The runners-up in the Tech in Residence contest, enjoyn.me, will also work out of the Hive this summer. That company gathers data on where members shop, eat, drink and more in order to provide them with recommendations about where to go next.