Can SMEs Still Afford to Set Up Business in Hong Kong?

According to Instant Offices, although it is one of the most expensive cities for high-rise office rentals in the world, demand for office space in Hong Kong continues to soar. Despite being such a competitive market, research suggests it’s still possible for small businesses to secure affordable workspace in this thriving global hub.

With a highly diverse market and unrivalled manufacturing capabilities, Hong Kong boasts an economy that supports foreign business owners and entrepreneurs. As a major financial centre and travel gateway, its location in the heart of Asia makes it ideal for international trade and investments, and a sought-after location to set up a business.

To determine the affordability of SMEs setting up in Hong Kong, Instant has conducted an analysis of major business locations along commuter routes to determine the average cost-per- desk in each area, as well as the number of co-working centres per area.

With the average cost per desk per month ranging between HK$3,597 in Wan Chai to HK$4,827 in Sheung Wan, results suggest that if SMEs and entrepreneurs embrace alternative solutions to conventional office leasing, it’s possible to secure space in one of Hong Kong’s business districts.

Cost per desk at a glance

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According to Instants’ flexible office experts, there is an increase in the demand for office space in areas around Kowloon such as Tsim Sha Tsui, due to the fact that Kowloon is generally more cost-effective than Central. With an average cost per desk of HK$12,198, co-working in Central has become a viable alternative for SMEs who want to set up alongside big players in the finance industry, as well as major corporations, with 46 locations in that area alone.

Locations across Hong Kong Island outside of Central such as Admiralty and Causeway Bay are areas high in demand due to a well-established business infrastructure, while in Kowloon, which has around 70 co-working centres, Tsim Sha Tsui is considered a central business hub with desk costs averaging around HK$4,924.

Newly emerging centres such as Kennedy Town and Sai Ying Pun are proving to be popular as alternative locations. It is inevitable that further expansion of alternative parts of HK will see growth to reflect the opening of newly built MTR lines as they open.

Companies looking for even more cost-effective solutions are steering away from prime locations and establishing themselves in more spacious areas in and around Lai Chi Kok, Kwun Tong and Diamond Hill.

About The Instant Group

The Instant Group is the global flexible workspace specialist. Underpinned by unrivalled expertise, Instant tailors unique solutions to help businesses of all sizes to grow, drive savings or gain invaluable insight. Established in 1999, The Instant Group has achieved 23% compound growth over the past four years and continues to expand with private equity funding secured from MML Capital in 2012. With offices in London, Berlin, Dallas, New York, Hong Kong and Sydney, The Instant Group employs more than 100 experts and has clients in 113 countries. For more information, visit