Home / Tech / An employee at investment giant TIAA has contracted coronavirus, and the Manhattan WeWork office where they were working has been closed for cleaning

An employee at investment giant TIAA has contracted coronavirus, and the Manhattan WeWork office where they were working has been closed for cleaning

FILE PHOTO: A person wearing a face mask walks along Wall Street after further cases of coronavirus were confirmed in New York City, New York, U.S., March 6, 2020. REUTERS/Andrew Kelly/File Photo

  • An employee at financial giant TIAA has contracted coronavirus, Business Insider has learned. 
  • The worker in New York was quarantined and classified as low-risk. They tested positive for the virus days after their quarantine began. 
  • The employee worked in TIAA’s WeWork space at 575 Lexington Avenue in Midtown Manhattan, TIAA’s temporary home while nearby headquarters are renovated. 
  • The WeWork in Midtown Manhattan where the employee was working has been closed. In a memo to its employees on Friday, TIAA said it expects to reopen the office on Thursday after a deep cleaning.
  • All employees at the WeWork location are barred from the building and must leave their personal belongings at home. Even WeWork employees are self-quarantining for 14 days. 
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A worker at TIAA, the investment firm that oversees $1.1 trillion, has contracted coronavirus, according to a memo seen by Business Insider. 

The employee worked in TIAA’s WeWork space at 575 Lexington Avenue in Midtown Manhattan, TIAA’s temporary home while nearby headquarters are renovated. WeWork has five floors at the building, according to its website, and houses other customers there besides TIAA. 

That location is now closed and employees’ keycards have been disabled, per a WeWork email to tenants at the building, including TIAA, reviewed by Business Insider. 

In a separate memo to its employees on Friday, TIAA said it expects to reopen the office on Thursday after a deep cleaning. Employees from the 575 Lexington location are required to work from home until then. 

“We continue to be in close touch with this particular [coronavirus-stricken] associate and the associates who were in close proximity, and we’re offering them the company’s full support,” the memo said. 

A WeWork representative confirmed that the office company notified its members at the building and closed the office.

More than 100,000 people have been infected with coronavirus globally and more than 3,400 have died. The US has reported 14 deaths.

14-day self quarantine for WeWork employees

TIAA first sent out an email on March 4 that one of its employees had been exposed to the coronavirus and was quarantined, the New York Post previously reported. The building was then deep-cleaned. On Friday, employees learned their colleague had tested positive. 

TIAA told employees on Friday it was trying to ascertain how to connect them with laptops for remote work, asking them in the memo to share their specific technology needs.

The WeWork email said members at the location could not access the space until further notice, nor could any personal items be retrieved. Members at 575 Lexington are not allowed to work in other WeWorks. 

The WeWork email said its employees at the location would self-quarantine for 14 days. On Tuesday, the office company issued guidance about coronavirus, the first time it addressed the virus in an all-member email, Business Insider previously reported.

Some tech firms have reported cases of the coronavirus, including two Microsoft employees, a Google employee in Switzerland, and a Facebook contractor in Seattle. 

Two HSBC employees, one in China and the other in London, have contracted the virus, according to a Bloomberg report. 

Wall Street firms are implementing travel bans and splitting teams to work remotely.

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SEE ALSO: Bank of America is splitting up its Wall Street traders and sending some to Stamford amid concern over coronavirus

SEE ALSO: Morgan Stanley is moving about half of its Wall Street traders to its disaster-recovery site outside NYC to prep for the coronavirus spread

SEE ALSO: WeWork just gave its US tenants guidance on coronavirus outbreak — weeks after the outbreak started

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