Tech Spaces: why founders are flocking to these 5 hybrid capitals

Thanks to the flexibility of hybrid working, people can now work from virtually anywhere. Many tech innovators are capitalising on this freedom, shifting away from traditional business centres — a movement that has given rise to new tech hubs. Dive into the cities leading this transformation.

Places like California’s Silicon Valley have always been celebrated as epicentres of groundbreaking innovation and collaboration.

Yet, in the post-pandemic era — and as we’ve seen across all industries — the push for work-life balance and flexibility is reshaping the tech landscape. This evolution is giving rise to innovation centres in new and diverse locations. To highlight this shift, here are five emerging tech hubs.

Lisbon: a digital nomad hotspot

 The historic streets, the vibrant nightlife, the custard tarts – Lisbon has been a tourist favourite for years, so it makes sense that digital nomads would find their way there.

The Portuguese capital was named the 10th best ‘work from anywhere’ city in a recent IWG study, thanks to its affordable cost of living and excellent transport links. For tech professionals, the allure of balancing office hours with beach breaks is undeniable. And the annual Web Summit, hosted every November, draws tens of thousands of innovators and entrepreneurs, further enhancing the city’s appeal

Rio de Janeiro: a Latin American tech hub

Investment in Latin American tech has been growing steadily over the past five years.

According to World Finance, it doubled annually since 2016 before reaching a record high of $4.6bn in 2019. Rio is at the epicentre of a start-up boom, with a new development in the city’s former dock region providing a 10,000 square metre technology centre capable of housing up to 400 new businesses. What’s more, the 2024 Web Summit is expected to generate BRL 1.2 billion for the local market.

So go on, Imagine yourself working at our Ipanema offices, before heading down to the beach at the end of the day. Appealing, isn’t it?

Toronto: leading Canada’s hybrid scene

With its vibrant cultural scene and proximity to some of the world’s most incredible landscapes, Toronto has become a leading hybrid work hub. It is ALL about work-life balance. Great Place to Work Canada x Microsoft looked at 100 Canadian companies that champion “employee experience and use it as a driving force for their hybrid environments,” and 45 of them were based in Toronto.

We have offices all around the city, both in the centre (by the best brunch spots) and in some of the up-and-coming neighbourhoods. And the city’s hybrid ethos will be put to the test next year when tens of thousands of people come to the Collision tech conference.

Dublin: tech giant central

Dublin has such a burgeoning tech presence that its Docklands area has been renamed the ‘Silicon Docks’ – our own Spaces offices are also there. The Irish capital has been chosen as the European headquarters for tech giants including Google, Facebook, Airbnb and PayPal, among others, and hosts one of Europe’s fastest-growing B2B tech events, The Dublin Tech Summit. Surely among the reasons why Ireland has one of the fastest-growing economies in the Eurozone.

What’s more, this city, famed for its friendliness and bustling social scene, has one of the highest shares of hybrid job postings. According to LinkedIn, nearly half (42.2 per cent) of all paid job postings in Ireland now offer hybrid working, so those savvy tech innovators are able to enjoy both a career and the craic.Hong Kong: the hybrid expansion

Yes, Hong Kong has been a major business capital for years. But hybrid working has taken things one step further, adding even more buzz to this city’s business scene. Small start-ups are taking advantage of Hong Kong’s established tech networks by using some of the new hybrid flexspaces that are opening up. IWG alone has opened four shared workspaces this year covering nearly 70,000 square feet. Currently, it has 21 centres in the city across five brands.

The 2025 Rise tech summit will bring together established tech insiders and new innovators, to reinforce Hong Kong’s position as a global tech hub.

The global shift towards hybrid work is reshaping the dynamics of the tech industry. While traditional tech hubs retain their significance, emerging new ones across different continents underscore the industry’s adaptability and the universal desire for a more balanced lifestyle. These cities prove that the future of tech isn’t stuck in one place; it’s a worldwide phenomenon that’s continuously evolving to new ways of working.

Find out how Spaces can diversify your workplace and help create more work-life balance.

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