Buoyed by its 250 million users and and estimable worth (valued at $700 million), SoundCloud has just opened its swanky 2190-square-foot headquarters overlooking The Berlin Wall Memorial. The offices are housed in The Factory, a new Google-funded tech incubator in Berlin and named for the renovated factory at its center.
The space is sleek and modern, with a resort tilt, thanks to its library, indoor garden, and yoga room. There’s a designated tech-free zone, complete with beanbag-esque chairs, shag carpeting, and a wood-burning fireplace--so people can get in touch with their Luddite sides. If that’s not offline enough enough, they can unwind in the soundproofed nap room. Twice a week, local chefs prepare meals for employees in a dining room resembling a chic Mediterranean café. When SoundCloud employees want to celebrate how lucky they are to work in such a space, they can head to the photobooth-equipped party room, also perfect for hackathons and meetups with others in the Berlin tech scene.
Designer Kelly Robinson, who has done work for AirBnB and Couchsurfing, led the project, in collaboration with Timo Nerger, Martin Jacobs, and Karim El-Ishmawi, partners at the Berlin-based architecture firm Kinzo. Key to the design was finding a way to express the company’s devotion to music. One room features a sculpture by U.K.-based creative team Us, made from vinyl records arranged so that they mimic the visualized sound waves of the song, I Will Never Change, by British dubstep musician Benga. State-of-the-art recording studios make the space sound as good as it looks.
The new headquarters will accommodate more than 200 employees--from product, engineering, design, finance, legal, human resources, and more. SoundCloud’s neighbors in the Factory--or “residents,” as they’re known--include Mozilla, Zendesk, and Toast. As far as tech startup headquarters go, SoundCloud's aren't as zany as Google’s amusement-park-like spaces--but for a music company, Berlin's the place to be and the audio/music focus certainly makes it a great space in which to get work done.