Even before announcing his retirement as president of Erwin Penland, Joe Erwin already had his next idea for a business in mind.
Just three months after leaving the Greenville-based advertising agency he co-founded in 1986, Erwin started to launch that new idea called Endeavor, a “membership-based, co-working community for independent companies and freelancers in the creative services field.” But, Erwin can sum up the new venture into just three words:
“This is a creative, collaborative community,” Erwin said.
The intent of Endeavor is to give creative services companies a place to work and meet to collaborate with peers. The new venture will be located on the fourth floor of the One building at 1 N. Main St. in downtown Greenville.
Despite not having any members and having only recently rolled out the idea, Erwin said his team of Erwin Creates — including former Erwin Penland staffer Shannon Wilbanks, who is a managing partner; Lori Pindar, director of Erwin Center Initiatives for Erwin Creates; and Erwin’s son Doug — has already received inquiries from companies and individuals looking to join Endeavor. Joe Erwin said those calls have come from as far away as Toronto and San Francisco.
“There are people looking for a place to be,” Joe said. “That is what this is … a place to be.”
He added his rationale for utilizing the entire fourth floor of the One building as the ideal location for the new community.
“The space matters. That is why we are biting off the investment,” Joe Erwin said. “There is just a great buzz in the area, and that is what creative people crave.”
Doug Erwin will be managing director of Endeavor and will handle the day-to-day operations. He said Endeavor will help those smaller creative services companies be able to network and collaborate with, not only people with experience like his father, but other people and companies who are seeking ideas and solutions to challenges.
“It’s just the right time for something like this,” Doug Erwin said. “You have a great pool of talent here and people just waiting to get out of working in their living rooms.”
The layout for Endeavor will include several open work areas coupled with a large “community space” as well as private desks and offices. The fourth floor will also be equipped with conference rooms and a new gym. Memberships will range from daytime to 24/7 access.
Endeavor is expected to be operational for members in mid-April. Daytime access memberships will come online in May.
Reach Matthew Clark at 864-235-5677, ext. 107, or @matthewclark76 on Twitter.