Coalition: Flatiron member Try the World featured on FoxNY

Is there anything more fun than exploring a foreign grocery store and admiring the beautiful packaging, discovering new foods and flavors that you’d never see at the supermarket back home?

Thanks to our Coalition: Flatiron member, Try the World, you don’t need to leave the country to get that experience. You don’t even need to leave your house. Once you subscribe, you’ll receive a box filled with gourmet food products from a different country every two months. They’ve all been specially selected by world-renowned chefs, so you never have to worry about ending up with something that turns out to be less delicious than the packaging would suggest.

It’s a pretty cool concept, and New York’s Fox 5 thinks so too—that’s why they featured founders David Foult and Kat Vorotova on “All Business with Alison Morris” this week. Check out the clip, which was filmed at Coalition: Flatiron, on FoxNY.com!

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Post-Valentine’s Day Blues? Check out HeTexted

Over at our Coalition: Flatiron location, one member company is revolutionizing the world of dating advice. Back in the day, you probably turned to friends to ask, “What does this text message mean?” But now, thanks to HeTexted, you can turn to experts from around the world.

On HeTexted.com, users submit questions and receive crowdsourced answers. Advisors are also available for private consultations, in case you’d rather not talk about your relationship on a public forum. And the founders of HeTexted, Lisa Winning and Carrie Henderson McDermott, have even published a book: “He Texted: Understanding dating in the digital age.”

With more and more people using texting and its own unique language as a form of communication, there’s room for misunderstanding in relationships. HeTexted is here to help you cut through the confusion and figure out what’s really being said.

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How is engaging your audience like looking for love?

Here’s some excellent advice from our Harlem Garage community member ThunderActive on how to engage your audience on blogs, social media, and in emails. As it turns out, it’s not so different from dating. In order to connect with people online, you need be a little picky, avoid assuming that they’re all the same, think about what motivates them, and know where things are headed… kind of like you would if you were looking for a relationship. Because it is a relationship, after all, just the professional kind.

According to Content Specialist Leanna Kelly, “At ThunderActive, we work with clients to create content that elicits emotion, because we know these types of feelings will encourage engagement and shares. If a person can relate to a common challenge or learn how to resolve an issue, we’re confident it’s going to make a lasting impression that will keep readers coming back for more.”

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New Year, New Buns

We celebrated the New Year (both Chinese and American) in style with delicious sweet and savory buns from Chinatown’s Tai Pan Bakery.

The event brought together members from our Coalition and MicroOffice locations at 1375 Broadway, in the heart of Midtown.

Much fun was had by all as we kicked off the first networking event of 2015!
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Coalition / MicroOffice Holiday Party

Last week, we hosted our annual holiday party to help all of our awesome member companies to network and get to know each other. The party was co-sponsored by member company Next Step Staffing, and was a venue to ring in the holidays and the New Year. Members came to enjoy the festivities from MicroOffice and its Coalition coworking spaces from across Midtown, including our Flatiron, Chelsea, Midtown West, and Times Square locations. The party was organized by members of our Community Manager team, who made sure that there were plenty of holiday-themed drinks, snacks, and cocktails to keep the party moving all evening.

Event co-sponsor, Next Step Staffing is a member at Coalition’s Flatiron location. Next Step Staffing is a boutique staffing agency specializing in the tech industry, matching IT professionals with corporations, financial institutions, and tech start-ups. The Community Manager of their location, Emma Larson, commented that the Next Step team has been proactive community builders, and hopes to have many more events with them. “They were instrumental in making the event a success!”

Events like this remind us that starting your own business is almost as much about the people you’re working near as it is about the space you’re working in. We’re excited to end 2014 with even more energy than we started with!

microoffice coalition holiday party

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Member Spotlight: Ari Tolwin

This month, we sat down with founder Ari Tolwin of Happy Tree. Happy Tree produces maple water, a delicious and all-natural drink sourced from the maple trees of the Catskill Mountains.

Q: What is maple water? Is it similar to maple syrup?
A: Maple water is what the tree actually produces – boil it to get syrup, which is a concentrate of the water – or enjoy it pure and unprocessed, as we do.

Q: When did you decide to start producing maple water?
A: We first tried maple water while making maple syrup upstate. It was love at first sight for us – and then we quickly heard about a South Korean tradition where they do a pure maple water cleanse, which suggested that something that we are passionate about could appeal to a broader audience.  All in all, we decided to go for it a day or two after we tried it for the first time.

Q: What does the process from tree to bottle look like?
A: We gather the water in the spring, and then freeze it as quickly as possible so we can keep it fresh and raw all year round.  Each week, we thaw a portion of our stash and bottle so it’s always fresh in stores – and in our office fridge.

Q: Why choose maple water over coconut water, or the many other healthy drink options that are out there?
A: Maple water is great for someone who wants the nutritional value of coconut water or juice without the sugar and calories.  It’s also unique in the role that it plays in nature – when the ground is frozen and the water doesn’t flow, nature doesn’t bloom, and when the ground thaws and the water flows, the trees come back to life.There is no other beverage that has a comparable role in nature to pure, raw maple water

Q: Where can people find Happy Tree maple water?
A: All over NYC!  Whole Foods, Fairway, Oren’s Daily Roast, Gourmet Garage, Foragers, and many others.  Check out our website at drinkhappytree.com for the most up-to-date list.

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Team Day at Central Park

For all of those mourning the end of summer: you are not alone. Last Friday, our MicroOffice staff took the day off to enjoy what’s left of the warm weather. We trekked up to Central Park, where we held training for new team members, played games, and gobbled up pizza and ice cream. Here we are below:

Our awesome faciilities team: Joanna, Jose, Tony, and Mike

Pilar, Taina, Wellie, Kate, Vu, and Sharleen

The Whole Gang.

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MCC’s Networking & “Toot Your Own Horn” Breakfast

Yesterday one of our longtime members, the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce, hosted an awesome networking breakfast with TD Bank. Several attendees were given the opportunity to “pitch” their businesses. Fun fact: the MCC was founded in 1920! Since then, this non-profit member organization has served as a valuable resource to Manhattan’s business community through events of this nature. For more information on upcoming events, read on.

MCC Networking at TD Bank

Celestine, Yasin, and Paula of the Manhattan Chamber of Commerce

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Member Highlight: Charles Marcano

This month Charles Marcano sat down with us to discuss his work in marketing and design at Prestige Development Services, Inc.

Q: Charles, tell me what Prestige is all about.
A: Prestige is an environmental engineering company. We remove lead, mold, PCB’s, and other hazardous substances from buildings. We also remove ammunition from firing ranges!
Q: Wow. Do you ever remove them yourself?
A: No, not at all. I’m in charge of all aspects of marketing and design. I establish relationships with contractors and promote our company to government agencies, such as the United States Department of Defense.

Q: But you’re a designer at heart. How long have you been at it?
A: I’ve been a designer for 27 years. Before that I was in the army for 8 years.

Q: What would you say is a top misconception that people have about designers?
A: That we’re all good-looking (laughing). Well, I think one typical misconception is that graphic design, marketing, and sales can all be accomplished  by one individual. They are very different aspects. Some designers are totally creative and not so great at compartmentalizing. My own training is in marketing, advertising, painting, illustration, and computer graphics.

Q: You’re relatively new at MicroOffice. How do you like the space so far?
A: Oh, I love it. I’ve been here since the spring. People here are friendly and nice. And nobody steals my food from the refrigerator!

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Harlem Technology Forum

HarlemGarage was honored to host Community Board 10’s Harlem Tech Forum on Saturday, June 21st.  The event’s participants included: Congressman Charlie Rangel, Borough President Gail Brewer,  Microsoft’s Director of Technology and Civic Innovation John Farmer and many more within the Harlem tech space.

The key topics of the morning’s discussion centered on just what establishing the country’s largest free outdoor WiFi zone could mean for the Harlem community.  Job creation and the equal access to technology were consistent talking points throughout as many in attendance have visions of Harlem becoming a tech hub of the not so distant future.  Many of the attendees have worked with HG in some aspect and it was great to welcome everyone into our space again for such a great cause.

Congressman Charles B. Rangel

Representatives from local tech companies, schools, & economic development organizations

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