Webster’s dictionary defines a “maven” as an expert or connoisseur.
The term aptly fits Maven Space: an Indianapolis co-working space, event venue and social club created by mavens, for mavens.
Co-owner and CEO Leslie Bailey said the space serves to support entrepreneurs, remote workers, executives, creatives, dreamers and doers. It was created for those who crave opportunities to make connections. Maven Space is for people to find the resources they need to get their big ideas off the ground.
“First, there was Indy Maven, which is our website. I saw a gap in the market when it came to storytelling and news for women. It was really supposed to launch as a website with a newsletter, but women kept asking can they join something, so we added a membership to the website,” said Bailey.
Indy Maven launched in 2019.
Five months after its launch, the pandemic happened.
Bailey said connecting women was an initial part of Indy Maven. She remembers hosting numerous one-on-one phone calls with members.
“I didn’t know what it was going to be, but when I think back to the vague general vision I had, I feel like I spoke the space into fruition,” said Bailey.
All Bailey initially wanted was an old building with a new feel. She never thought Maven Space would turn into a tangible location in the heart of Downtown offering members much more.
“The launch of Maven Space has been a labor of love from day one. It happened with my husband’s and my personal savings, my co-founder, Kate Tauton-Rigsby, and a healthy dose of optimism or insanity, depending on how you look at it,” said Bailey in a statement made when launching the space’s IFundWomen crowdfunding campaign.
“Given that only 2% of venture capital dollars go to women, I knew better than to even try that route. And yes, there are small business loans available, but that only increases your overhead and makes it harder to break even.”
According to of 2019 Small Business Administration (SBA) report, only 28% of total SBA loan dollars went to women-owned businesses.
Those loans came with a nearly 10% interest rate.
With a lot of community support and partnerships, Maven Space opened on the first floor of the historic Gibson Building, at 433 N. Capitol Ave. Suite 100.
Along with several other amenities, the space also offers a mother’s room, a private place for women to pump their breast milk that includes a mini fridge for milk storage and complimentary pumping supplies provided by The Milk Bank.
Maven Space’s memberships are open to everyone, and you can find further details on the perks it offers HERE.