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Technology / Networks

Monkey Inferno – Work hard, play hard (and relax)


After buying back Bebo last week, Michael Birch, who co-founded the site in 2005 with his wife, Xochi, tweeted: "We just bought back Bebo for $1-million. Can we actually reinvent it? Who knows, but [it] will be fun trying …"

With sites like Facebook and Zynga now worth $75bn (£50.4m) and $10bn, he’s right. Success is uncertain, but no doubt he’ll have fun trying.

His San Francisco-based development company, Monkey Inferno, seems like the most fun and creative workplace.

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Birch bought a former envelope factory on Tehama Street, San Francisco, in 2010, turning it into a personal ‘incubator’ for talented individuals and unique Internet projects.

The 12,000-square-foot building, which plays host to 21 employees, features a massage room, a ping-pong table, an iPad-controlled entertainment system and even a bar with happy hours. They also have a private chef to cater for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

And outside the office you have the whole of San Francisco to explore. There are loads of restaurants and shops nearby at Westfield and Union Square, along with parks to lie about in. And it’s always warm and sunny in San Francisco – better than England! Even if you get bored of that, they take regular trips to Napa and Vegas.

So if you’re a designer, developer or would-be IT whizzkid looking for something new, Monkey Inferno might not be a bad place to work – they’re on the lookout for new talent!

Do you think working in an office like Monkey Inferno’s would be a help or hindrance when it comes to being productive? I’d love the chance to find out…
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