The state is helping a digital startup hub expand. $2.5 million in state funds are going to 1871, a technology center in Chicago, to pay for 25,000 square feet of additional space. Gov. Pat Quinn says in the two years since 1871 began, its companies have created more than 1,000 jobs. “They have lots of ideas that they want to turn into invoices,” Quinn said, “and we have to invest in the people here and all over Illinois who have boundless enthusiasm.”
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The state put in $2.3 million to help the hub launch in 2012. Heidi Brown was one of the first to come on board with her company Options Away, which allows you to lock in the price of airline tickets for up to three weeks. “I was the first person—the very first person—to sign onto the expansion project,” Brown said, “I don’t want to go anywhere.” The expansion is expected to be completed in October.