Groupon Founders Could Buy Chicago’s Historic Wrigley Building

August 21, 2011

12:00 am

Since 1920, the Wrigley Building has been a symbol of power, situated along the Magnificent Mile of Michigan Avenue in Chicago. Owned by the 120-year-old Wm. Wrigley Jr. Co. of the candy empire, this white building stood tall overlooking the Chicago river with a large clock tower as a staple of the budding skyline. Today, there were reports that the Wrigley building could be sold to Groupon co-founders Brad Keywell and Eric Lefkofsky.

Nothing has been confirmed, but apparently there are others also interested in the old building, which could use some TLC. While it’s sad to see the Wrigley company unload the building after all these years, they are looking to move their offices further north.

According to reports, the duo would use the space to house startups funded by Lightbank, their early-stage venture fund, which funded Groupon and a number of other companies. It would be great to see startups taking on Michigan Avenue en force. After working on Michigan Avenue and loving it for years, I have to say, there is just a great energy being on the Magnificent Mile. This is the Wrigley Building. It is one of only a few historic buildings in the city that carries real stature, and it has stood as a symbol of capitalism in the city for almost a hundred years.

This purchase would represent a real changing of guard in terms of business leadership and act as a strong reminder that, along with a new mayor in town, there are also 2 entrepreneurial leaders looking to redefine the city as a hub for tech and business innovation.

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Frank Gruber is the cofounder, CEO and Executive Editor of Tech.Co (formerly Tech Cocktail). He is the author of the book, Startup Mixology, Tech Cocktail’s Guide to Building, Growing, and Celebrating Startup Success. He is also a startup advisor and investor to startups.

Find Frank Gruber online and follow him on Twitter at @FrankGruber.

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