Uberoffices opens second of three spaces


Ray Rahbar, founder of Uberoffices. (Adam Patterson )

Uberoffices swears it isn’t riding the tails of Uber, the mobile car service company from San Francisco that is disrupting the taxi industry.

“We are nowhere near ripping them off,” said Uberoffices chief executive Ray Rahbar, who is opening his real estate service in Tysons Corner today, which he says will be the largest co-working office space in the region.

Rahbar, who grew up in the Washington area and went to George Mason University and Georgetown Law Center, owned his first business at 16 (a landscaping business) and never looked back.

What is Uberoffices?

A real estate-as-service for various entrepreneurs and anyone with an entrepreneurial mind-set.

Who thought this up?

Myself and a few friends started thinking about it in 2007.

Where did you get the idea?

We all used to have our start-ups and small businesses. The biggest cost was real estate in our early days. It’s tough to find real estate that you liked in a location you like which was affordable.

How much space are you offering?

In Rosslyn, 24 offices. Tysons Corner, 47 offices and in Dupont Circle, which does not open until September, we will have 103 offices.

What size?

We rent offices for between one and 12 people. In Dupont, we have 44,000 square feet, Tysons 20,000 [and in] Rosslyn it’s 12,000.

How long is a typical lease?

Three months then month-to-month after that. We ask for a 30-day heads up when you are moving out.

What do you charge?

Five hundred dollars per desk in an office, per month. For a four-person office, it’s $2,000 a month.

Do you own the office space?

We lease it out from landlords and re-lease it to start-ups and small business.

Where do you get your funding?

Partners and strategic investors.

Is Uberoffices profitable?

We sold out of Rosslyn location in 42 days. We suspect Tysons Corner will be as fast, as all we do is cater to start-ups and small business.

Who are your clients?

Everyone from [angel investors] and [venture capitalists] to freelancers and budding entrepreneurs: Veenome, Uknow.com, LiveSafe, GetGrow, Cerebus, LeagueApps, EventKloud, SeaHorce, Mytonomy.

Carlyle watch

The share price at the District-based private equity giant took a hit last week after one of its biggest shareholders, the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS), announced it was selling its 4 percent interest in the firm after 12 years. CalPERS, which made over three times its investment, is selling its shares at $27. The stock opened the week at $29.62, but had fallen by more $3 by Thursday. CalPERS’s stake dates back to the days when Carlyle was private. Carlyle went public a year ago; its shares debuting at $22. Also last week, analysts at Sandler O’Neill began coverage on shares of Carlyle, setting a “buy” rating on the stock.

The Buzz hears:

Tim Cooney, Potomac native and Gonzaga graduate, has left Loomis Sayles after eight years and has joined J.P. Morgan’s high-net worth practice.

Cooney, 46, who attended Boston College and Catholic University Law School, worked on anti-money-laundering for the White House between 1996 and 1999. He started his own database company, which was later sold to an investment bank.

“It’s always been a dream of mine to work for J.P. Morgan,” said Cooney, who has a master’s from Cambridge University in the United Kingdom. “They came to me to grow the Washington market.”

Virginia native Alicia Aloe visited Winston Lord’s Venga team last Wednesday for business. Aloe, who sold her Charleston, S.C., company, Table Maestro, to OpenTable, came to town for a two-hour strategy session; she’s a Venga investor. After the meeting, she and Lord took in the Nationals game against the New York Mets, where Aloe was tossed a game ball by Mets outfielder/second baseman Jordany Valdespin.

Tammy Darvish, executive vice president for Darcars, is giving the commencement address Thursday to the 167 students in the graduating class of Ballou High School in Southeast D.C. Darvish has been volunteering for eight years at the school, where the area Toyota dealerships funded a vocational training center that prepares students for jobs as auto mechanics and managers. We asked Darvish if she had a subject for her speech: “I am thinking of the power of citizen activism.”

Capitol Hill’s Tortilla Coast celebrates its 25th anniversary this summer at its First and D streets home in northeast D.C. The homage includes a June 19 happy hour with 1988 prices; a June 20 trivia night; and a June 22 reunion night for Hill veterans with 20-plus years experience. Then there’s there June 23 all-you-can-eat fajitas night. Don’t forget the Alka Seltzer.

Thomas Heath is a local business reporter and columnist, writing about entrepreneurs and various companies big and small in the Washington Metropolitan area. Previously, he wrote about the business of sports for The Post’s sports section for most of a decade.
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