York Butter Factory (YBF) is a co-working space for technology startups that has a singular vision: to provide Melbourne's best entrepreneurs with an environment where they can — and I quote — "get shit done". Here are the photos.
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Established in 2011, YBF was one of the first co-working spaces in Melbourne to target the city's burgeoning startup market. The 1850s heritage-listed building which gave the company its name is now home to over 60 B2B startups. These range from solo entrepreneurs to large teams who work on everything from fintech products to security solutions. Membership is divided into three categories: full-time, part-time and after hours.
The YBF workplace is spread across two floors. The upper level is a typical open office sporting a vibrant atmosphere where collaboration is encouraged. By contrast, the lower level — affectionately dubbed "the dungeon" — is aimed at developers who prefer to work in silence.
The YBF workspace has a relaxed, makeshift vibe with desks and chairs coming in a variety of shapes and sizes. There are also bookcases, paintings and vintage furniture dotted about the place almost at random. It kind of reminds us of Erlich Bachman's tech incubator in the TV show Silicon Valley , but on a much grander scale.
The logo wall contains a mixture of corporate partners, colossal tech disruptors and YBF members who found success. Something to aspire towards?
YBF has included several artistic nods to the building's vintage past. This wine barrel doubles as a casual meeting area.
150 years ago, this meeting room was a refrigerated cellar for liquors and wines. In YBF's first few years of operation, it was chiefly used by corporate partner Coles for off-site meetings. (Its logo is still emblazoned on the door.)
The artworks adorning YBF's walls were sourced from local artists. In addition to providing startups with a physical working space, YBF attempts to foster a sense of community by encouraging entrepreneurs, mentors, and investors to share ideas. Its end goal is to put as many members on the the global map as possible.
The bottom floor also contains smaller meeting rooms geared towards brainstorming sessions between small teams. There's also a chill-out zone.
There's an entire cupboard devoted to organic teas. Did we mention this place was pretty hipster?