The startup community in Chicago is booming. A recent analysis found that Chicago companies offer the highest VC returns of any startup hub in the United States. The PitchBook analysts set out to discover which startup hubs had the most success and what city's startups offered investors the most return compared to their initial investment.
81 percent of the Chicago exits they measured had a 3 to 10-time return on their investment, the highest of 12 startup hubs in the U.S. that PitchBook surveyed. In addition, 45 percent of Chicago's exits had over a ten-time return, by far the highest proportion of any startup hub.
If you are a freelancer, entrepreneur or remote worker of any type in Chicago you're in luck. Not only is the local startup scene booming but amazing coworking spaces have created to meet demand for their services. Here are the best.
The digital revolution - began in the 1980s when the computer became a familiar machine. Rapid prototyping, cloud computing and open source movements are causing change to accelerate even faster, creating breathtaking opportunities for entrepreneurs who can innovatively harness these new tools.
Rev3 is an innovation center located in DuPage County, Illinois, with a focus on helping people and companies manufacture products, software, and technology to drive the third industrial revolution.
From astonishing waves of innovation to new product concepts, to technology that changes business models – Rev3 is a place of emerging opportunities, creativity and thinking outside the box.
Virtual Office $35, Hot Desk $200, Private Office $500
#23 Catapult Chicago
A unique cross between an incubator and a coworking space with a peer selected community of talented, ambitious, like-minded entrepreneurs. Founded by entrepreneurs for entrepreneurs, Catapult Chicago is the only non-profit working space for Chicago startups that have demonstrated business traction.
Catalyze is a nonprofit incubator, whose members have boots on the ground and sights on the stars. It is a creative and collaborative workspace, equipping its members with state-of-the-art tools, industry mentorship, manufacturing support, and investment networks.
Founded by a group of designers, engineers, artists, and entrepreneurs, Catalyze has grown from an idea to a community that spans a region. Through the sweat and toil of each and every member, it has become Chicago’s premier center for product development and commercialization. If you are in Chicago and need a place to start your business, look no further - they will be delighted to work with you.
Hot Desk $225, Dedicated Desk $350
#21 WeWork Chicago
From the colorful mural in the lobby celebrating Michael Jordan to the wallpaper adorned with local landmarks, you’ll never forget where you are when you step into this Chicago office space.
Inside this modern glass building in the heart of River North, you’ll find a Chicago coworking community bustling with energy, featuring sunny common areas, sleek conference rooms, and a dog-friendly atmosphere.
Easily accessible via public transportation, train stations for the Brown, Purple, Red, Blue, Pink, Green, and Orange lines are all within blocks. Nearby buses include the 22, 29, 36, 37, 65, and 156, among many others. When the sun goes down, you’ll find a thriving nightlife scene right outside the door. A lively neighborhood, great transportation options, and a space with lots of energetic members.
Dedicated Desk $450, Private Office $750+
#20 Serendipity Labs
By giving independent workers and mobile professionals flexible options to work the way they want and need, Serendipity Labs accelerates innovation and productivity. They're not just making better workplaces for their members they're helping make lives better.
Serendipity Labs was founded to provide premium, members-only workplaces with high-performance meeting facilities at corporate standards. They are building a network of inspirational workplaces, to enhance the quality of work life of their members and their guests.
Coalition is a collaborative space that fosters innovation, hard work, and growth for entrepreneurs and businesses. With locations in New York, Chicago, and Boston they cultivate a coworking community of driven members by providing work space, classes and events geared to help your business grow.
Day Pass $20, Virtual Office $85, Dedicated Desk $350, Private Office $850+
#18 The Bureau Chicago
The Bureau Chicago is a sophisticated office, meeting, and business event space that provides a high-end coworking environment for professionals looking for a footprint in downtown Chicago. Located in the heart of the South Loop, The Bureau offers private offices, dedicated desks, and creative open workspaces with access to wireless internet, printers, rentable conferences rooms and business event spaces.
At The Bureau, they have created an innovative and flexible office solution. Work, meet, and entertain, their space was created to handle all of your business needs. From office needs, meeting setup and preparation, to the hosting of your business events, The Bureau has you covered. The modern space is built to be as dynamic as your work.
Virtual Office $50, Hot Desk $350, Dedicated Desk $500, Private Office $1,000+
#17 Platform Coworking
Whether it’s working for yourself, or remotely, it’s great to be independent. But the “lone wolf” syndrome that comes with it—eh, not so much. The goal at Platform Coworking is to create an environment that allows you to focus on what’s important, getting your work done.
Day Pass $26, Hot Desk $215, Dedicated Desk $365, Private Office $700
MakeOffices empowers entrepreneurs and innovators with the workspaces and services they need to grow their business. Rent private offices, open desks, virtual offices, and meeting space, enjoy all-inclusive amenities, and join an inspiring community all at a price that fits any budget. Love Where You Work. Keep your overhead low, make connections, and build your business
Virtual Office $75, Hot Desk $250+, Private Office $550+
Grind is a collaborative workspace and coworking community dedicated to taking all of the frustrations of the old work experience and pulverizing them to a dust so fine it actually oils the wheels of the machine.
Grind provides frictionless and inspiring environments for entrepreneurs, freelancers, and small companies to build stronger businesses. Grind isn't an office, it's the antidote to offices.
Day Pass $35, Hot Desk $375, Dedicated Desk $425, Coworking + HR Benefits $475
Designed to be public when you want to be, private when you need to be, Assemble gives you everything you need to do your best work: independence, convenience, and community.
Designed by some of the country’s most creative and successful architects, with lots of natural light, open spaces, and beautiful views of the city. Glass-enclosed offices create an open environment while allowing for privacy, and the warm décor of the co-working space fosters a creative, inviting setting. Their members bring fresh, innovative ideas to a variety of industries.
Hot Desk $350, Private Office $700+
The greatest benefit of a coworking space like this is not in the amenities or even the location. It’s in the “assisted serendipity.” The people, and the luck that happens when those people share in a collective idea of growing and helping one another succeed.
If you’re looking for a shared-office space, place to connect with other motivated entrepreneurs, small business owners, hackers, social-impact organizations, get help with your MVP, or other business support, they’ve got your back. If you need help fund-raising, or looking for mentors, or simply a collaborative space to ideate, go and hang out.
Day Pass $20, Virtual Office $50, Hot Desk $199, Dedicated Desk $399, Private Office $999+
#12 Suite Spotte
Suite Spotte is a coworking community of freelancers, entrepreneurs, and small business owners inspired to create, collaborate, learn, and grow thriving businesses in their chosen sweet spot.
Their purpose is to fuel small business growth by bringing smart, creative people together in an energetic, productive workspace where knowledge is freely shared,and powerful collaboration born.
Day Pass $25, Hot Desk $275, Dedicated Desk $375
Workspring is a highly hosted space for offsite meetings, business events, and team spaces. It's an experience purpose-built to inspire your best work ever.
Sessions are all-inclusive—with concierge services, high-performance wifi, digital displays, work tools and supplies, energizing snacks and beverages, and more—allowing you to focus on mission-critical objectives.
Workspring was imagined by a group of workspace experience experts at Steelcase Inc. For 100 years, Steelcase has studied work behaviors and environments. They've taken those insights and created Workspring to address the needs of today's worker, who is more mobile and interconnected than ever before.
DeskLabs is a Chicago-based coworking community and event space encouraging creativity, passion, and collaboration among great innovative thinkers and doers. Their cooperative space provides the next wave of entrepreneurs with a comfortable, supportive environment to build and grow their businesses.
Virtual Office $80, Hot Desk $350, Dedicated Desk $450, Private Office $750+
In the suburbs of Chicago, 25N Coworking is a community workplace and meeting space for entrepreneurs, small businesses, virtual employees, and corporate teams.
More than a workspace, meeting rooms, and great coffee—they're a community built on the people they connect with and the opportunities they create. Their coworking space is expertly designed to spark collaboration and productivity, and their cutting-edge technology allows their members to sail through their workday uninterrupted.
Virtual Office $25, Hot Desk $265, Dedicated Desk $365
NextSpace provides innovative physical and virtual infrastructure that freelancers, entrepreneurs, and creative class professionals need to succeed in the 21st-century knowledge economy.
In an increasingly disconnected world, NextSpace creates a collaborative community that is revolutionizing the nature of work. Their business model is simple: NextSpace sells membership into that collaborative community. The real magic happens when their members (over 800 strong at last count) collaborate in big and small ways. They share expertise. They refer business to each other. They combine talents to tackle larger projects. They even found companies together. It's called the NextSpace Effect and it’s the single biggest value that NextSpace provides.
#7 The Shift
The Shift is a neighborhood coworking and community space with a focus on supporting, promoting, and connecting its members. Their shared workspace has a unique, modern industrial aesthetic, and comes with all the productivity-boosting amenities of a downtown office, without the hike.
With a full calendar of small business classes and personal development workshops, plus a vibrant community of innovative, driven professionals from a range of industries - The Shift is your neighborhood spot to be more productive, get things done, and get connected.
Virtual Office $60, Hot Desk $145, Dedicated Desk $295
#6 Free Range Office
Free Range Office is a coworking, meeting and event space located in the trendy Wicker Park-Bucktown neighborhood. A hub for entrepreneurs, freelancers, independent and remote workers, consultants, and everyone in between, a welcoming space to increase productivity, network, and be inspired. They offer open desks, private offices and conference rooms for members and the public.
Beautifully designed to offer concierge-style hospitality, Free Range Office provides a feng shui layout, energizing natural light, comfortable workspace options, and health-promoting amenities – from a fully-equipped chef’s kitchen to a peaceful outdoor terrace.
Hot Desk $285, Dedicated Desk $385
Industrious is reinventing how people work by creating social workspaces: private glass offices, beautiful common areas, and an inspiring community.
Industrious is the next evolution of the modern workplace: bright glass-walled private offices within a large, beautiful loft space, giving you the privacy you need to be productive, but the community you want to stay invigorated. Think of it as a private, comfortable office for you and your team—but right outside your office door, instead of finding an uninspiring office hallway, it’s like your favorite neighborhood coffee shop. From solo entrepreneurs to small law firms, freelance designers, financiers, and growing startups, Industrious offers the ideal environment.
Dedicated Desk from $420, Private Offices from $1,000+
#4 Brooklyn Boulders Chicago
If you want a gym to cowork from Brooklyn Boulders is an ideal place. The combination of types of exercise you can get done while coworking is surreal. It's as if Bill Gates and Arnold Schwarzenegger decided to collaborate on an ideal workplace.
A first of its kind rock climbing facility and dynamic creative community. With 25,000 square feet of climbing surface managed by a dedicated and skilled route-setting staff, Brooklyn Boulders is the ideal training ground for beginners and advanced climbers, diversified with classes in yoga, acro yoga, and capoeira.
Bouldering, auto-belay, top-roping, and lead climbing
Climbing training and classes
Yoga classes, fitness programs, and personal training
Weight room and cardio equipment
Group bookings, team building, and rental space
Coworking space with WiFi
Locker rooms and showers
Pop-up and event spaces
Day Pass $25, $125 Monthly or $1250 for an Annual Membership
MATTER is a community of healthcare innovators, an incubator of ideas, and a catalyst for change. They are boots-on-the-ground entrepreneurs pushing against the status quo and established institutions dedicated to improving patients’ lives.
At MATTER they are hungry for change, and they’re working together to solve real and complex healthcare problems.
MATTER’s mission is to proactively connect and promote collaboration between entrepreneurs, scientists, physicians and industry partners in order to bring next-generation products and services to market that improve the quality of care and save lives.
Hot Desk $300, Dedicated Desk $450
#2 Enerspace Chicago
Enerspace is a collaborative workspace where passionate entrepreneurs do their best work. Located in the Fulton Market area of the West Loop. Transportation is easy with Pink, Green, and Blue line stops close by, plenty of free street parking and a very bike friendly neighborhood. With new art galleries, bars and restaurants opening up in the area, you’ll have no shortage of places to go and things to do on your lunch breaks or after work.
5 stars on Google Reviews. Here are the highlights from their most helpful review-
I really love working from home. Enerspace is the next best thing to my comfy couch. All the coffee, weekly happy hours, monthly member lunches, and tons of random events plus really friendly and ambitious folks (Nicole and Jamie) to run the show help me be as productive as possible. Members get 24/7 access, too, which is HUGE when those big projects are deadlining. - Geoffrey Adler
Hot Desk Starting at $85, Dedicated Desk $425, Private Office Starting at $1000
Chicago’s brightest digital designers, engineers, and entrepreneurs are shaping new technologies, disrupting old business models, and resetting the boundaries of what’s possible. A place where you can share ideas, make mistakes, work hard, build your business and, with a little luck, change the world.
Located in the famed Merchandise Mart, the 130,000-square-foot facility provides Chicago startups with programming, access to mentors, educational resources, potential investors and a community of like-minded entrepreneurs that help them on their path to building successful businesses.
Hot Desk $350, Dedicated Desk $500