BRM was founded in Cremorne and has been providing property advice in the Cremorne area for almost two decades. This month BRM are proud to be delivering our latest project for one of the area’s most interesting commercial tenants.
Banxa is responsible for creating a ground-breaking payment services platform for cryptocurrencies. Within an industry that is experiencing its own hyper growth, Banxa is one of the fastest growing players. When the time came to relocate to an office that would accommodate this growth, Banxa engaged BRM to conduct an initial property search. With its previous headquarters based in Cremorne, Banxa chose to stay in the area so they could benefit from like-minded businesses and potentially move closer to those in the cryptocurrency industry.
BRM has been involved from the early stages of the project, from search and property strategy, to the design of the new premises, handover of the old premises and relocation. This end to end service is being delivered within a tight timeframe, against the backdrop of lockdowns. Despite the challenges of 2021, our Property and Design teams have fervently delivered each stage of the project to see the client move into its new home on Level 2 at 2-6 Gwynne St, Cremorne. This is an exciting time for the Cryptocurrency industry and this particular address which, with a growing number of tenants like Banxa, is repositioning itself as an industry-specific building.
We sat down with Design Lead, Maya Feldman and Property Director, Gab Aghion and discussed the outcomes of the project, working with Banxa and how their new workplace will accommodate their growth as a company.
BRM’s Design Lead, Maya Feldman on working with Banxa to design their new space:
Q. Can you identify some challenges that have arisen in this project and the approach your design team used to address them?
Maya: The principal challenge has undoubtedly been the tight time frame within which we’ve needed to work. Of course, COVID restrictions inevitably led to some delays and a limited number of workers on-site, but we’ve managed to carry out the work in these challenging circumstances. Like every industry, our team was forced to adapt during lockdowns so we had to think creatively about how we could execute the designs.
We also faced challenges with the layout of the base build. But our team found a way to split the front of house from the back of house while maintaining the design integrity and cohesion throughout. We achieved this through using the same colour themes in both sections, with more intense and pronounced colour in the casual and collaborative zones.
To accommodate new ways of working we went with a flexible layout which incorporates both individual and collaborative areas. Despite its small footprint, the office is not just desks and workstations, but a mix of flexible seating, breakout area, space for a large kitchen and fun elements like a foosball table and presentation screening amphitheatre.
Q. BRM has always valued the relationship it has with its clients throughout the project and beyond. What did you value about Banxa as a client and how was this reflected in the outcome of the project?
Maya: Banxa’s CEO had a strong vision of how his expanding team would work together. Clear instructions on priorities meant that concepts were approved quickly. His dedication to being part of the project meant that communication was easy and that we were able to harness the excitement of their success and growth.
BRM’s Property Director, Gab Aghion on advising Banxa’s property strategy and search
Q. This was a fast tracked project. What was BRM's approach to problem solving within such a tight timeframe?
Gab: For this particular project the property search phase overlapped with the design phase, so we had both teams interacting and working concurrently. To fast track the outcome we also added additional resources to the search and partnered with a builder at an agreed margin to remove the tender process and condense the timeline. Our Design team collaborated with the builder and they worked together as the builder began construction during the completion of the design.
Our team interacted and engaged with the landlord to help expedite the landlord approval process and we selected buildings that were completed, vacant and with services already installed which would allow work to commence as soon as possible.
The client also contributed to the success of the project. We briefed Banxa’s CEO about expedited decision making and he was very responsive, assisting the process by making quick and confident decisions.
Q. BRM's Property Team has provided end-to-end advice on Banxa's relocation, from Search and Strategy, through to fitout of its new office, and handover of its previous space. What were the highlights of this project for your team members ?
Gab: A big highlight for me was seeing our teams working together to achieve a successful outcome and navigating through the issues that COVID presented during construction. The speed of the search and working to transition it into delivery was also exciting.
Working with a client like Banxa, led by a visionary and inspiring CEO was another great feature of the project. Banxa’s new building already has multiple tenants in the cryptocurrency industry. The idea of a “Bitcoin Building” in Cremorne was pitched to the landlord as another tenant from the industry already occupied two levels. As property experts, it can be really interesting to see how the right mix of tenants can reposition a building, especially in Cremorne, the commercial hub for tech, design and progressive companies.
Q3. Banxa's preference was to remain in Cremorne, surrounded by like-minded businesses. 2-6 Gwynne St was chosen for its new offices. Explain why this building was chosen?
Gab: Cremorne is known for its cutting edge personality. It is Melbourne’s IT epicentre and has managed to retain its design focus and character while exponentially growing. Cremorne has good road and rail access and is full of high quality, modern buildings with great amenities. The fact that it sits just outside the CBD makes it easier for Melbournians to access from the East and South Eastern Suburbs. Banxa is an employer of choice and its new address will support it to attract and retain talent which is essential to its hyper growth.
Banxa had an existing relationship with the landlord who owned their previous building, and who was willing to meet and understand the timeline and client’s funding requirements.
The building itself appealed to Banxa with its location, modern appearance, slick entry, multiple balconies and fresh air access. It was already home to another crypto tenant, who are colleagues of Banxa which helped the landlord understand the industry and the rental guarantees. An incentive and landlord works that matched the market was also offered together with productive and efficient negotiations and lease reviews, with the real estate agent and landlord.
For expert property and workplace design advice, we invite you to have a chat with our team .
Contact us today
Sign Up To Our Newsletter