Looking for business inspiration? Visit O2's new central London workshop

O2store If you’re in London’s West End any time soon, be sure to take a trip down Tottenham Court Road. The capital’s haven for all things gadget, it’s now also the home to O2’s newest, and first split-level store, which opens today.



Split over two levels, it’s not just dedicated to helping you find a new phone and tariff for you, and walk out ready to go: it’s poised to become a hub for new businesses with its innovative O2 Workshop. Read on to find out more.

As a store, O2’s new complex is impressive. Spread across two levels and 4,500 square feet, it offers all sorts of new devices from smartphones to tablets to try out in-store, a huge consultation area to help you get set up, and even free O2 WiFi for customers.

There’s also an O2 Guru Bar where you can go for any troubleshooting or advice on getting the most out of your new technology, and the whole store is open to everyone: staff have been given training by the Royal National Institute Of Blind People and Action on Hearing Loss, and can help with any accessibility issues you may have with your new purchase.

But the new O2 store isn’t just a revolutionary shopping experience. The store is also pioneering a new concept, O2 Workshop. It’s designed for start-ups and small businesses, and to help them get ahead in a city where people are paying up to £1,500 per month for rented desks.

On the store’s basement level, you’ll find a workspace for up to 75 people, with workstations that can accommodate up to ten people at a pop. Not only are there power outlets and wireless printers for all, but three O2 Gurus are on hand to help with whatever you need.

Four meeting rooms and a private conference room are also available for breakout sessions, and O2 is planning to hold regular seminars to help business take off. It’s a notable shift from your average retail store, but one O2 hopes will change our expectations of customer service.

“Back in January, we announced a whole new approach to our retail business where we increased investment to continue to roll out our successful new store design and to add 250 additional O2 Gurus to help deliver a better experience,” says Richard Baylis, general manager for O2 Retail.

“As part of that change, we continue to trial new retail environments, such as our first supermarket concession, and now in the form of O2 Workshop at Tottenham Court Road. At this fitting location we are excited to explore a new level of service environment for our customers.”

You can find O2’s new store at 229 Tottenham Court Road.