Propel Partner Introductions—Common Ground in St. John’s

Common Ground Photo

Here at Propel, we rely on our network of partner organizations to help us bring our high-impact accelerator program to early and later-stage entrepreneurs around Atlantic Canada. Together with these partners, as well as our volunteers and expert coaches, we’re developing a thriving new economy in Atlantic Canada. Over the last 10 years we’ve launched 75 companies and we don’t hesitate to say that we couldn't have done it alone.

Walk just five minutes out of downtown St. John’s Newfoundland, and you’ll come to Common Ground. It’s the office for people who might otherwise find themselves working out of coffee shops or working from home—where the cat jumping onto your keyboard might be the only thing to break the trance that comes with staring at a screen for hours on end.

Founding director Mandy Woodland began Common Ground as a response to the growing community of entrepreneurs and self-employed professionals in St. John’s. Woodland understood that this sector would benefit from many of the things that go along with a traditional workplace, including the feeling of community. Common Ground offers its members the water cooler, the “coworkers,” the meeting rooms and a place to work near downtown St. John’s, without the commitment of paying for a commercial lease.

Located on the 2nd floor of the Benevolent Irish Society Building, the facility offers two kinds of membership. Full time memberships provide 24/7 access, and are great for people whose productivity relies on having somewhere to work outside of the home. Part-time memberships are for people with only occasional need for a working space or meeting room, with users getting 5 days per month. Both levels of membership enjoy access to the site’s fibre Internet, the option to reserve meeting rooms, kitchen access, printing services and of course, unlimited coffee.

Sounds pretty good, right? Well here at Propel, we can speak to that. Our own CEO Gary Dinn has his offices in Common Ground. 

Chris Gardner, a board member at Common Ground says they’re really pleased that Propel is establishing a Newfoundland-based partnership of the sort it has with other working spaces and startup houses in Atlantic Canada. 

“Everyone at Common Ground is very excited to see what companies develop through Propel ICT’s program. Propel ICT has an incredible track record of accelerating Atlantic Canadian startups through mentorship, coaching and attracting investors.”

Describing how he sees the partnership between Propel and Common Ground, Gardner says it just makes sense, adding with a laugh “It’s like we set the table and they’re bringing dinner!” 

At Propel ICT we love what Common Ground is doing. We know how vital community working spaces and access to business resources are to the healthy growth of our region’s startups. Through this partnership, and our work with the Genesis Centre and StartupNL, we look forward to readying a whole new generation of Newfoundland startups to meet the world.