A new co-working space, called Claim, is taking a bit of the Railway Exchange Building, the enormous downtown St. Louis edifice that largely went dark when abandoned by Macy’s. Claim is providing office space for startups, small businesses and entrepreneurs. Each office will have desks, private offices and meeting rooms.
Ola Ayeni, founder of eateria — an Arch Grant recipient last year — is the person behind Claim. He says the name comes from the westward expansion driven by the California gold rush. During that time, St. Louis was an entrepreneurial hub where merchants who offered prospectors tools and other supplies, Ayeni says.
While the Railway Exchange Building gains Claim, it is losing tech incubator T-REx, which bought the Lammert building downtown to expand its co-working space. T-REx, which is short for technology regional entrepreneur exchange, has grown to more than 70 startups, accelerator programs and venture capital firms since it launched in 2011.