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Real Estate Lessons From 3 High-Growth Companies

Thanks to rapidly growing teams and the constant evolution of company culture, high-growth startups face specific challenges. One of the largest challenges is finding office space that can accommodate growth and flux. But the lessons these three D.C.-area startups have learned in finding their own creative space solutions can help guide companies of all sizes, regardless of industry.

FiscalNote CEO Tim Hwang


How They Got Here

Tim Hwang and two of his high school friends spent the summer of 2013 the way so many startups do: hunkered down in Silicon Valley (or, in their case, a Motel 6) with $2K of funding and an idea. They saw an opportunity to leverage data and analytics to redefine the way organizations understand, interact with and ultimately predict the work of their governments. 

Today, FiscalNote supports thousands of organizations working in more than 25 countries, helping them manage the local, federal and international issues that affect them most. Hwang, now CEO, has put his company at the forefront of policy and technology while building a culture that infuses Pennsylvania Avenue with savvy, Silicon Valley sensibility. 

What's The Deal With Their Real Estate?

Following a series of temporary space solutions and rapid growth, FiscalNote eventually landed at 1201 Pennsylvania Ave. NW with expansion rights for future growth and flexible termination rights. 

In addition to finding its permanent home, FiscalNote established a partnership with Mayor Muriel Bowser's office, the first of its kind, to get the city’s assistance with the securitization and build-out of their space in exchange for providing apprenticeships, internships and summer learning opportunities to locals.

A Lesson For The Rest Of Us

“Seek out partnerships with other stakeholders, including local municipalities and affinity groups, that can help you land exactly where you need to be — or, in some cases, even provide your company with incentives to make your new space a reality,” said JLL’s Bobby Blair, who represents FiscalNote.

Kit Check CEO Kevin MacDonald

Kit Check

How They Got Here

It all started when Kit Check CEO Kevin MacDonald had dinner with his wife’s friend. She was a pharmacist at a large hospital in Baltimore, and he learned that she spent her entire day picking up vials and looking at expiration dates. He thought there had to be a technology solution for this problem, so he found one.

Since launching in 2012, Kit Check has enabled hospital pharmacies in more than 400 locations (and growing) to be more efficient and accurate as they dispense, track and restock millions of medications every year. It’s a quintessential story of entrepreneurship, financial growth and the cultural stewardship of his team. 

Now operating from a hip office space in Dupont Circle, Kit Check continues to innovate and grow. 

What's The Deal With Their Real Estate?

Kit Check started operating out of MacDonald's D.C. apartment, eventually growing into a coworking space and then a series of short-term space solutions. 

Kit Check now calls 1875 Connecticut Ave. NW home, a space conducive to Kit Check’s projected growth over the next three years. 

Not only does the new space have great functionality, but it was fully wired and furnished upon move-in. Kit Check only had to rebrand the space to make it home. The technology startup is now thriving in its new location in the heart of Dupont Circle.

A Lesson For The Rest Of Us

“It’s important to think about timing and growth trajectory when growing in and out of temporary space,” said JLL’s Andy O’Brien, who represented Kit Check. “Before moving into their new office, we quickly backfilled Kit Check’s former Chinatown location to another tenant with no loss, downtime or out-of-pocket costs to them.” 

Verodin Chief Operating Officer Ben Cianciaruso


How They Got Here

Verodin created the first and only platform built to assess whether a company’s cybersecurity tools are doing their job. Following a year of 400% growth, Verodin needed a new headquarters to support their expansion trajectory — and they needed it fast. 

When the company was started in 2013, their headquarters was in Reston with most of their employees based in California and Texas. With success came growth, so Verodin’s leadership sought a location that would centralize employees in one place, give the team room to expand and keep the focus on its customers. 

The self-proclaimed tech geeks and hackers found that and more in Tysons.

What's The Deal With Their Real Estate?

Now centrally located in a technology and innovation hub, Verodin’s headquarters provides direct access to some of the nation’s top security and technology talent, as well as to many government agencies. 

A Lesson For The Rest Of Us

“It’s important to think about your talent — most importantly, where they live,” said JLL’s Chuck LaRock, who represented Verodin. “With this strategy, Verodin was able to enter an emerging market early on and secure favorable lease terms providing additional expansion options for their rapidly growing team.” 

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This feature was produced in collaboration between Bisnow Branded Content and JLL Mid-Atlantic. Bisnow news staff was not involved in the production of this content.

Related Topics: startups, tech startups, office space