Building institutional strength
‘Werking’ is a very modern mixture of working space and café, taking up a large expanse of the ground floor of Asunción’s Paseo La Galeria towers complex – the Paraguayan capital’s emerging financial centre.
Wooden tables are scattered throughout the open design, there are meeting spaces that companies can hire, and a larger configuration is possible for events (such as lectures given by Koga, a Paraguayan business-orientated version of TED talks).
One of the aims of Werking is to help entrepreneurs and startups meet with other like-minded businesses.
Use of the space is free – just the automated registration of biometrics is required – and it’s busy as Euromoney meets William Kent, director of Credicentro, the company that last year created the Werking concept.
We order lunch – naturally by swiping and jabbing at one of the large interactive screens that act as cashier. As we head to our meeting space we pass other screens, the functions of which are closer to the main business of the company that has been operating as a “casa de crédito” in Paraguay since 1984.
Once registered, users can apply for loans here – typically small amounts over a maximum of a couple of months – they can receive the cash from these loans from these machines, and use them to pay instalments and get cash advances on cheques.