Two Georgetown graduates are returning to D.C. to expand their workspace startup The Gathering Spot later this year. Originally founded in Atlanta, the co-working space is an exclusive club that hosts events, dinners and members-only experiences.
Founders Ryan Wilson and TK Petersen met as roommates at Georgetown University. They later decided to create The Gathering Spot in Wilson’s hometown of Atlanta. Since its opening in 2016, the club has doubled in size and its membership includes more than 1,500 people.
“It feels like we’re coming back home,” Wilson said about The Gathering Spot’s expansion. Wilson and Petersen lived in D.C. for eight years before venturing to Atlanta.
Wilson is currently the CEO of the company. He earned his bachelor’s and law degrees from Georgetown. Petersen graduated from Georgetown with a degree in accounting and finance.
The idea for The Gathering Spot developed during the duo’s struggles to find a place to work at night. They turned to restaurants and cafes to finish projects, but even then those spaces were limited. According to a 2017 Office Vibes report, only 30 percent of coworking space members prefer working during traditional business hours. Wilson and Petersen wanted to give night owls a place collaborate and network.
“I liked to work at night, but I couldn’t find a space to work that late,” Wilson said. “But we wanted to take the idea of being able to work after business hours to the next level.”
The Gathering Spot has hosted more than 2,000 events with brands such as Google, Netflix and Spotify. The team is hoping to bring their success to their downtown DC location. The company has also curated members-only experiences with celebrities like Ludacris, T.I., movie producer Will Packer and Atlanta’s mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms.
The Gathering Spots serves as a networking hub for entrepreneurs, innovators, and individuals looking to reshape industries. Getting an invite from the club isn’t impossible. Interested companies and individuals can request an invitation through The Gathering Spot’s website.
“We like to know what our members are passionate about,” Wilson said. “We want to know what people care about outside of the workspace and what they want to see changed in the world.”
Approved individuals must pay an initiation fee of $300. Afterward, membership fees are $2,000 annually or $200 per month. Members can pay for designated desk space with secure file storage for an additional $165 per month. The Gathering Spot also offers “Under 30” membership packages with $100 monthly dues.
Wilson said although D.C. and Atlanta have many similarities, the team is going to have to make slight changes for The Gathering Spot’s new location.
“We’ve learned that the processes have to be different,” Wilson said. “We can’t have a cookie cutter business model because people in Atlanta like different things from people in D.C.”
The Gathering Spot announced its expansion to D.C. at this year’s SXSW conference.