Jenny Poon

Founder and CEO, CO+HOOTS

“I am a born and bred Asian-American generating substantial economic impact while positively contributing to the greater society, and I wouldn’t be here without my hard-working parents who were refugee immigrants.”

Jenny Poon is a serial entrepreneur and founder of CO+HOOTS. Ranked the No. 4 co-working space in the U.S. by Inc.com, CO+HOOTS currently houses more than 280 scaling entrepreneurs and small businesses and has been integral in creating hundreds of jobs locally. She has led CO+HOOTS from its inception in 2010 to being recently ranked the No. 1 most innovative co-working space in the world. 

Through her background in business, design-thinking and marketing, she built a place where she could connect with like-minded professionals who believe business growth comes from collaboration between different industries. She speaks regularly on leadership and the importance of nurturing innovation in the workspace, and works tirelessly to bring visibility to co-working as a new economic development tool for building vibrant and equitable cities. 

Poon is the daughter of Vietnamese refugees and was born and raised in Minnesota. She grew up helping her parents navigate the ins and outs of running a business, spending most days after school at her parents’ small restaurant with her brother and sister, helping cut carrots and serve tables. From loan rejections to lack of access to trusted advisors, she saw her parents navigate the overly complex world of business without knowing the language and having no connections. It also exposed the great disparity between opportunities available for entrepreneurs of color and their white counterparts. Her upbringing led her to devote her time in combating the deep and systemic issues that plague communities of color in the business world. 

During COVID, she saw the critical need to support entrepreneurs across the nation who have been heavily impacted by the pandemic. Knowing COVID has unevenly impacted minority-owned businesses, she jumped into action to support municipalities in creating solutions for businesses in need to get faster access to support. She led the launch of HUUB, a data-driven entrepreneur support platform for municipalities. HUUB increases the success of diverse entrepreneurs by providing important resources to businesses while enabling cities to attract, develop and retain high-potential entrepreneurs of all different backgrounds. She describes herself as an automation and efficiency nut, and has been building tools to help support entrepreneurs from the ground up and now from the top down. 

Poon believes, as Freada Kapor Klein, Ph.D., (American venture capitalist, social policy researcher and philanthropist) put it, “Genius is equally distributed, opportunity is not.”

With an end goal of creating more vibrant and inclusive entrepreneurial communities, Poon aims to expand HUUB to other cities to help more than a million people create strong livelihoods for themselves and future generations. Poon and her husband, Odeen, have a fiery daughter named Ayda who can often be found running the front desk at CO+HOOTS. Poon credits much of her success to having an incredibly supportive husband who is an equal partner in business, life and parenting. 

Poon serves as an advisor for numerous startups, board chair of CO+HOOTS Foundation (a 501c3 nonprofit) and mentor for several young entrepreneurs. She was named Phoenix Business Journal’s 2016 Phoenix Businessperson of the Year — the first minority and the first woman to receive the honor.

Organization Name:
CO+HOOTS / HUUB

Main Office Address:
221 E. Indianola Ave.
Phoenix, AZ 85012

Phone:
(602) 738-8001

Website:
cohoots.com

No. of Years with Firm:
10

Year Established Locally:
2010

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