Medium-sized company is now the German market leader in the field of “business centers in the luxury segment”.
Berlin, March 28, 2017. The story of the medium-sized company Satellite Office is also the story of its founder Anita Gödiker. A German success story. To be more precise: an Emsland…
When the company was founded in 1997, Helmut Kohl was the current German Chancellor, the domestic currency was called the Deutsche Mark, Jan Ulrich won the Tour de France, and Siemens launched the first cell phone with four colors on the display. The computer has replaced the typewriter. The Internet is slowly making its way into everyday office life.
Over the past twenty years, both the economy and politics have experienced some turbulence and change. Satellite Office, founded and run by Anita Gödiker, was in the middle of it all. The stars of the late 1990s were SAP, Mannesmann and Deutsche Telekom, and the new market was booming. Anita Gödiker brought the idea of office sharing with her from a professional station in the USA to Germany. Knowing that not every U.S. idea works in Germany, she wanted to realize her very own idea of business centers. Today, twenty years later, it is fair to say that she has achieved this.
1997-2000 – “Wild time, early days”.
Everything starts with a first step. Anita Gödiker, born and raised in Emsland, founded a business center in Berlin for Emsland companies in 1997. She called it the “Emsland House Berlin”. Their idea: Numerous companies from Emsland helped to build the “new Berlin”. “But how did they do it with a functioning office on site in Berlin? From a hotel room? Still light years away from today’s digital possibilities, temporary project assignments and the main office hundreds of kilometers away were almost pioneering work,” the entrepreneur recounts. Gödiker rented the first 800 square meters in one of the new office palaces at Checkpoint Charlie. And set up top-notch equipped offices that were ready for occupancy and fully functional in minutes. Including telephone, internet, secretaries and conference rooms with service. An absolute novelty for the time.
Office sharing and coworking as it is written in the book. At a time when nobody in Germany knows these words yet.
Anita Gödiker is 39 years old in the founding year of Satellite Office, receives the award “Ambassador for Emsland in Berlin”. Through her own start-up experiences, she establishes the “Existenzgründerinnenpreis für Berlin”. “The price was an office at Satellite Office for 6 months followed by free Virtual Office for another 6 months. I couldn’t really afford that at the time. However, I ran into so many closed doors during the startup process that it was close to my heart to support and encourage women to start their own businesses. And it continues to do so to this day.
2000- 2008 “Growth, charity, prosperity”.
The good 1990s were followed by a difficult period in the German economy from 2000-2003 with major losses. It was not until spring 2003 that the turnaround was achieved. Anita Gödiker had to steer Satellite Office through stormy seas, had more than one sleepless night. Despite everything, social commitment is still very important to her today, and not only in good times. “Nothing was given to me as a gift, and yet, or precisely because of that, I want to give something back in life. For Innocence in Danger e.V., an association that works against the spread of child pornography on the Internet, Gödiker donated the representative office in Berlin from 2002 to 2006. Gödiker also supports the German Child Protection Association. Until 2009, she is even on the board of the Kinderschutzbund, Berlin section. In 2006, the entrepreneur initiated and organized the project “Children’s Holidays”. Disadvantaged children from Berlin Wedding can travel for the first time – spend vacations on a farm in Emsland. Gödiker also supports DophineAid e.V., which helps traumatized people through dolphin therapy. In the meantime, the Germans had accepted the euro as a means of payment, and an upswing put the stock markets in a jubilant mood. Satellite Office now operated four business & conference centers in Berlin and had established itself in the market.
2009-2015 “The first steps outside Berlin”.
In 2009, Gödiker again took entrepreneurial risks and expanded to Munich. Gödiker knew the Bavarian metropolis very well and was able to draw on an existing network. Nevertheless, she changed her concept for the first time: she specifically looked for a listed property in a prime location and integrated public coworking areas and a small bistro for the first time. She found a suitable property, converted it and opened the first satellite office outside Berlin in 2010. In 2013, her path led her to Hamburg with the same concept. In the finest location, with a direct view of the Binnenalster, it opens a 1500 sqm business & conference center with generous open spaces. In the same year, she launches the “Egg for Innocence” campaign. Eggs were sold in all receptions – hard boiled and chocolate. Every euro went to Innocence in Danger e.V. With the campaign Gödiker wanted to set an example, because a high politician had been suspected of child abuse and later also convicted. Known for her liberal, political stance, she could not let this scandal go uncommented.
2016 “The Year of Expansion Abroad
Gödiker took his first step into other European countries in 2016. In the midst of the freshly erupted discussion about “letterbox companies”, she went to Switzerland and opened a Business & Conference Center in the noble Bahnhofstrasse in Zurich, which does not exist in this configuration a second time. “This small but very fine center of 646 sqm with a fantastic view of Lake Zurich all the way to the mountains, excellent location between Paradeplatz and Bürgliplatz cannot be topped and is very close to my heart” enthuses Gödiker. At the same time, Gödiker opened additional locations in Munich and Berlin. At the end of 2016, seven locations belonged to Satellite Office. In the same year, Satellite Office receives the “Best Business Center in Germany” award from Manager Magazin.
2017 “Satellite Office turns twenty”.
In 2017, everything is themed “20 years of Satellite Office”. More locations are planned, long-time customers are invited to various events and more and more people are working for Satellite Office. At the beginning of 2017, Gödiker receives probably the most important award of her career: from her employees she receives the “Honorary Oscar” for twenty years of passion, innovation and trust. A German success story in the middle of Berlin.