Construction crews this month marked the topping off of the five story Edison District office building in downtown Overland Park earlier this month. And when the building is done, a major portion of it will be devoted to space designed to incubate businesses just getting off the ground.
One of the 25,000 square foot floors will be reserved for Edison Spaces, a company that offers flexible office space and short-term leases designed for the needs of burgeoning companies.
Edison Spaces was founded by Tim Barton and Matt Druten, the former Freightquote executives who are the driving forces behind the Edison District project. The company currently has two locations in Johnson County — both on College Blvd. — as well as one in Austin, Texas.
Druten said that, as one-time startup execs themselves, they liked the idea of giving other entrepreneurs a chance to be part of what they are building in downtown Overland Park. When completed, the Edison Spaces floor at the Edison District will be able to accommodate 30 to 40 small businesses, each with their own private office space. The leases can be month-to-month, providing growing businesses with flexibility.
Edison Spaces has also launched a program designed to help start ups get off the ground. Through its Jumpstart initiative, it offers grants that provide three free months of office space to start ups that meet a selection of qualifications, including having been founded in the past six to 24 months and having staff of two to eight people. The company recently announced that it had provided a Jumpstart grant to Fresh Eggs, a design company.
“Ultimately, we know the challenges entrepreneurs face when starting a business, because we ourselves faced these challenges,” said Druten, who serves as CEO of Edison Spaces. “We always say Edison Spaces was built by entrepreneurs, for entrepreneurs and the Jumpstart program is our way of giving dynamic small businesses a leg up into office space and ultimately into the next phase of their business.”