Founded in 2009 by Australian Josh Reich and Indian Shamir Karkal, Simple is an online bank that streamlines saving and budgeting. Launched in New York, Simple’s team moved west in 2011, drawn to Portland by the creative culture and affordable rent.
The concept behind the company—creating virtual envelopes for your money, allowing you to have specific savings goals—has proven very popular, translating into a 43 percent spike in customer base in the last six months alone, and putting Simple on track to be one of the nation’s fastest growing banks. An increase in clients means more employees, which spurred Simple to move their headquarters from Northwest to the Central Eastside in last May, where they welcomed 300 new staffers.
Despite the recent expansion, Simple is still tight on office space.
The new Simple site is directly west of their headquarters near OMSI, once home to Speed’s Towing, where demolition and construction have already begun on new digs. Led by developer Killian Pacific, Simple will set up shop in the 50,000-square-foot heavy-timber building, slated for completion in early 2018.
Forget the file cabinets, gray cubicles, and dreary beige walls of the Banks of America of the world. Similar to Simple's current headquarters, which feature pillow-clad “hearths” for community mingling, fanciful murals, work stations fitted with locally made furniture, and a truly deluxe kitchen sided by a wall of windows and space enough for 300, the new addition will be styled by the architects at Hacker. Though the final interior design plans are still in process, the vision is to create an open area with tons of natural light and clean lines, a space that is at once simple and sophisticated.