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Kyle Coolbroth, CEO of CoCo, right, addresses Greg Tehven, co-founder of Emergine Prairie, left, and Jim Gartin, president of the Greater Fargo Moorhead EDC, center, during a press conference at The Stage at Island Park in Fargo on Wednesday. Carrie Snyder / The Forum

Shared spaces, dreams: Collaboration space coming to downtown Fargo location

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Fargo - CoCo, a Twin Cities company that sets up shared workspaces for budding entrepreneurs and small businesses, is teaming up with a local digital-media company to establish a collaborative space in downtown Fargo.

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CoCo Fargo, as the space is being called, is expected to open in early August in a 6,000-square-foot space CoCo is leasing in the Merchants National Bank Building at 122½ N. Broadway. The CoCo Fargo space will be above the King House Buffet.

The new CoCo location, the company’s first outside of the Twin Cities where it has three sites, is the result of years of effort by the Greater Fargo Moorhead Economic Development Corp., which helped CoCo pin down a Fargo location; the Kilbourne Group; and the founders of Emerging Prairie, a Fargo-based media company committed to fostering an entrepreneurial-friendly environment in the Upper Great Plains.

Under an arrangement announced Wednesday, CoCo will rent and manage the Fargo space and its membership, while Emerging Prairie will organize events for the location.

“We are committed to supporting the entrepreneurial ecosystem,” said Greg Tehven, co-founder of Emerging Prairie. “We believe that a collaborative work space improves the work experience for people, especially entrepreneurs,” he added.

It is expected CoCo Fargo will accommodate 100 members, including space for individuals and small startups.

Building relationships

CoCo CEO Kyle Coolbroth said the company was honored to be invited to Fargo.

“There’s an extraordinary level of enthusiasm and commitment in this city. Our goal is to actively support all those who want to build new businesses and help Fargo grow,” he added.

Coolbroth invited individuals, groups and companies to buy memberships in CoCo Fargo.

Memberships for individuals are typically month to month, with the amount charged based on how many days a week someone expects to use the space.

Someone visiting one day a week would pay a one-time registration fee of $50 and a monthly rate of $70.

Someone using it five days a week pays the same registration fee, plus $300 a month.

Hours for the space will be from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Those who pay for six-month memberships are granted round-the-clock access.

Coolbroth said co-working and collaborative spaces like the kind CoCo sets up work on a number of levels – from being places to work in to being places where people meet to share ideas, encouragement and inspiration.

“It’s a big tent. I can’t think of a profession that’s not represented,” he said, adding the spaces “enable people to do the work of their dreams.”

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Dave Olson
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