By Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer Published Oct 27, 2022 at 9:02 AM

Fiserv announced Thursday that it plans to open a 160,000-square-foot, "state-of-the-art environment that will inspire innovation and collaboration in a modern campus with a techie vibe," in Hub 640, the site of the old Boston Store department store Downtown.

The announcement follows recent news that Kohl's will open a department store on the first floor of the building at the corner of Wisconsin Avenue and Vel Phillips Avenue.

A Fiserv spokesperson said that the company's current Brookfield headquarters will ultimately close.

"We expect to begin moving our operations from Brookfield to Milwaukee in 2023," said Britt Zarling.

A statement from the company says, "The campus will feature a world-class client meeting and conference center, social and collaboration spaces and culinary programming to create a superior workplace experience. The location will include a dedicated associate welcome entrance and covered parking. Fiserv will invest in enhancements and pursue Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification for the building."

Things continue heating up in the Westown neighborhood, as a block away, Milwaukee Tool is readying its new offices Downtown, too. That site is across the street from the new Iron District soccer stadium, concert venue, hotel and residential development expected to begin construction soon.

Add those to expansion at the Fiserv Forum/Deer District, the growth underway at the Wisconsin Center, the opening of the MSO's Bradley Symphony Center, The Avenue's office and residential spaces, 3rd Street Market Hall and more.

“Fiserv adds the forward momentum of downtown Milwaukee, where their name already boasts a rich presence at Fiserv Forum, the home of the Milwaukee Bucks,” said Milwaukee City Development Commissioner Lafayette Crump in a statement issued Thursday.

“The City is looking forward to Fiserv and its employees bringing talent, commitment and investment to Milwaukee.”

The Boston Store location closed on Aug. 29, 2018, after nearly 125 years on the site.

You can read a history of the Hub 640 / Boston Store buildings in this Urban Spelunking story.

Founders 3 brokers John Davis and Ned Purtell represented owners North Wells on the deal with Fiserv, which was represented by CBRE's Bill Bonifas, Matt Cariello and Kenzie Kiefer. 

“Milwaukee is an ideal location for Fiserv’s global headquarters, which will be a prominent showcase and physical manifestation of the company’s brand experience, and Fiserv will add significantly to the positive energy in the center of our city,” said Mayor Cavalier Johnson in Thursday's announcement.

“This is what the power of partnerships is all about. I welcome Fiserv and the hundreds of employees coming to Westown.”

According to the tech firm, which offers payment and financial services solutions, the new headquarters in Milwaukee at 640 Vel R. Phillips Ave., is expected to create 250 jobs in the next five years.

Fiserv will make a $40 million investment in the headqurters, the company said in a press release, contingent upon incentives from Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) and the City of Milwaukee.

“Fiserv roots run deep in Wisconsin, and we’re proud to be expanding our presence and investment in the state and the local workforce," said Fiserv President, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Frank Bisignano, in the release.

"Our new world headquarters location will be a dynamic hub of collaboration and innovation, bringing our people together in an inspiring workplace to create opportunity for energizing and career growth experiences, as we lead the industry forward on behalf of our clients.

“As part of our investment in this new Fiserv global headquarters, we look forward to being a force for good, as we create positive and meaningful impact and grow our presence in the increasingly vibrant Downtown Milwaukee community.”

Fiserv was recently ranked high on the American Opportunity Index, which evaluates how companies create economic mobility for employees. It has also given more than 130 grants to small businesses in Milwaukee via its Back2Business program.

Bobby Tanzilo Senior Editor/Writer

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., where he lived until he was 17, Bobby received his BA-Mass Communications from UWM in 1989 and has lived in Walker's Point, Bay View, Enderis Park, South Milwaukee and on the East Side.

He has published three non-fiction books in Italy – including one about an event in Milwaukee history, which was published in the U.S. in autumn 2010. Four more books, all about Milwaukee, have been published by The History Press.

With his most recent band, The Yell Leaders, Bobby released four LPs and had a songs featured in episodes of TV's "Party of Five" and "Dawson's Creek," and films in Japan, South America and the U.S. The Yell Leaders were named the best unsigned band in their region by VH-1 as part of its Rock Across America 1998 Tour. Most recently, the band contributed tracks to a UK vinyl/CD tribute to the Redskins and collaborated on a track with Italian novelist Enrico Remmert.

He's produced three installments of the "OMCD" series of local music compilations for and in 2007 produced a CD of Italian music and poetry.

In 2005, he was awarded the City of Asti's (Italy) Journalism Prize for his work focusing on that area. He has also won awards from the Milwaukee Press Club.

He has be heard on 88Nine Radio Milwaukee talking about his "Urban Spelunking" series of stories, in that station's most popular podcast.