Creative Factory started when the owner of the club that is based in the building and I realised that there are a lot of young, creative people in Rotterdam who need spaces to work. However, they do not want to be tied by long-term tenancies because they do not know whether their business will still be around in five years’ time. What these people need are flexible short-term contracts and open spaces where they can meet other companies and where they can get advice to help them develop. These people tend to be very good at making films or creating websites, but are usually not as efficient when it comes to finding customers. We went and presented the idea of transforming this amazing building into a Creative Factory to the city administration. The Mayor and the municipality liked the idea straight away but they first wanted to see a list of businesses interested in such spaces. They wanted to know where all those young people were and why they had not contacted them before. When we compiled and presented them with a list of more than 125 companies, they were surprised by the scale of the demand. These companies never contacted the city authorities before because they thought they were too small to rent large spaces. Creative Factory was the first step in opening this new, unknown market.

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