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4 Unconventional Career Paths at Daftarkhwan


Lahore Digital Festival at Daftarkhwan Downtown

A common misconception in the business world is that coworking spaces are filled with mostly if not exclusively tech companies. According to Deskmag, on average, 41% of all coworking space members are freelancers, most of which are creatives. This is only inflated in Pakistan’s context, declared by The World Bank as the 4th fastest growing freelance market with a 47% growth rate.


In this increasingly diversifying work landscape, Daftarkhwan helps support professionals with unconventional career paths by providing them with a vibrant workspace bursting with inspiration, a distinct network, creating a pipeline of clients and supporting infrastructure such as huddle rooms and podcast rooms.


So what are some unconventional career paths Daftarkhwan has supported?


Wedding Planning

wedding decor

Valued at over Rs 900 billion per annum, the wedding industry is one of Pakistan’s biggest industrial complexes, scattered across dressmakers, florists and caterers. For wedding planners in particular, coworking offers a formal workspace while granting them close proximity to other professionals with ties to the wedding industry such as photographers, editors and graphic designers. Typically located in central areas, coworking spaces also help cut commute for wedding planners who have to run to and fro from their office and the venue of the wedding.


Eager to build up her own venture from the ground up, Neelam Shoaib co-founded Shadiyana, a one-stop online platform for planning weddings in 2021, handling everything from venues and decor to photography and makeup artists.


As someone who does “everything and anything the company requires”, Neelam was relieved by the convenience Daftarkhwan provides, “Daftarkhwan focuses on the logistics and administration of an office space that are difficult to take care of which lets me focus on my work.”

Photography

Photos hanging with clips

Beyond the plethora of connections that photographers gain from coworking, the physical space itself serves as a great shooting location especially for corporate photographers. It also gives them a formal address, whether through a virtual office or a private office, amplifying their credibility and offering them an impressive space to host clients.


Daftarkhwan houses numerous photographers and studios such as Amna Shahid, Danish Khan, Areesh Zubair, Ali Chaudhary Films and Photographire, a platform to connect amateur photographers with clients.


Areesh Zubair, a lifestyle, travel, corporate and fashion photographer adores “creating art, saving memories, delivering messages and connecting with clients from very diverse backgrounds and industries.”

Areesh is best known for his Duur Se Portrait series in 2020, covering Arslan Ash, Esports prodigy and four-time EVO Tekken champion for RedBull in 2021, and covering the PSL Anthem this year.


Fondly recalling his first exhibition at Daftarkhwan in 2019, Areesh stated, “I’ve gotten countless clients from Daftarkhwan’s coworking hall. I have done so many shoots in the space, the community is like a family to me”


Virtual Plant Nursery

Sitting area at Daftarkhwan One

Virtual plant nurseries like most virtual businesses fit right in with coworking. However, they access a new circle of clientele in corporate spaces, moving towards regular distribution and interesting strategic partnerships with coworking spaces themselves to enrich the workspace.


“The day I stepped into Daftarkhwan, I was looking for something that can help me raise awareness about my brand,” states Ajwad Imtaar, founder of Deskdecor.pk, a virtual plant nursery, “Daftarkhwan have helped me by providing an environment that brought traffic to my startup and showcased my brand, so yes I really love this place as its calm and has all I need!”

Game development

PS5 gaming controller

Coworking spaces are a safe haven for indie game developers, where they can both withdraw to focus on their projects while also gaining help from other teams with varying specialties like metaverse and virtual reality.


Daftarkhwan hosts a number of companies that work on game development, ranging from educational and corporate to AI generated such as Tintash, Activ8 Games and Games Artist Studio.


Specializing in machine learning, Ali Zia Khan is the founder of Games Artist Studio, a generative AI platform that helps create and animate polished game assets for game developers.


An ambitious entrepreneur and risk taker, Ali relayed, “I left a $200k job that I had taken and started my current venture and within three months, built out the product and released it to 1000+ game teams including teams from the largest game studios in the world including Gameloft and Epic Games.”
Daftarkhwan gives Ali the “ability to scale up quickly without worrying about operations.” He particularly appreciates the networking opportunities granted by a coworking space, “I love the community element — getting help from other teams and meeting old colleagues has helped a lot especially in the start when I was alone in my journey.”

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