BenchPrep, a comprehensive online learning platform, and Meltwater, a global internet and media intelligence company, will lease office space at Chicago’s Willis Tower. Equity Office facilitated both leases into the iconic tower, which is currently 87 percent occupied.
“We are pleased to partner with organizations like BenchPrep and Meltwater—two growing companies that provide unique solutions for their consumers—in developing ideal workspaces which support their growth and help to foster a dynamic corporate culture,” said David Moore, senior vice president and portfolio director, Equity Office. “Enhancing the Willis Tower for the modern workforce has meant adding amenities expressly intended for tenants whose workdays are not the typical nine-to-five. BenchPrep and Meltwater represent the businesses of the future, showcasing the ingenuity of Chicagoans, and we are excited they chose Willis Tower as their new home.”
BenchPrep is an e-learning innovator that streamline content management, educator tools, dashboards, reporting and e-commerce into one easy-to-use, enterprise SaaS solution. They will occupy more than 15,000 square feet on the 57th floor.
“Expanding BenchPrep’s presence and moving our headquarters was a logical and necessary step as part of our business growth strategy,” said Ashish Rangnekar, BenchPrep CEO. “It was just a few years ago that Ujjwal Gupta and I started BenchPrep, and yet now we are calling the iconic Willis Tower home. Our new work environment will help us achieve our aggressive revenue goals and continue attracting Chicago’s top talent to join our rapidly expanding team.”
Meltwater, founded in 2001 in Oslo, Norway, develops and distributes monitoring and analytics software for social media and SEO. This will be the fourth Chicago location for the company, which hosts 26,000 clients, over 1,500 employees and 55 global offices.
“New technology, including recent advances in artificial intelligence, are transforming the communications industry and we’re excited to bring these innovations to the greater Chicagoland area,” said Jeff Rusignuolo, area director, Meltwater Americas. “Willis Tower will now be home to our team of media experts in every industry, supporting Meltwater’s growth across the Midwest. We are proud to be the city’s top choice for media intelligence solutions and look forward to extending the reach of Chicago-based businesses both locally and globally.”
Maggie Brophy, Jamey Dix and Joy Jordan of the Telos Group represented Equity Office in both transactions. Christine Torres, vice president with Colliers International, represented BenchPrep. Paul Reaumond and Steve Salomon with CBRE represented Meltwater.
Blackstone acquired Willis Tower in 2015, and announced a $500 million renovation to the building earlier this year in conjunction with Equity Office, the U.S. office portfolio company wholly-owned by Blackstone’s real estate funds. The transformation will be the first major renovation in the building’s 43-year history, and will include 150,000 square feet for exclusive tenant use, more than 300,000 square feet of new retail, dining and entertainment space to be added to the base of the building and a new, 30,000-square-foot outdoor deck and garden.