Getty Images / Michael Kovac)
Well, this is embarrassing.
A few months ago — in the middle of the special purpose acquisition (SPAC) craze — we said that if WeWork went public via a SPAC, we would shut down.
WeWork announced plans to go public
It will do so in a merger with BowX Acquisition, a SPAC backed by NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal.
According to CNBC, the deal will value the coworking startup — which mainly leases office space and rents it out in smaller parcels — at $9B, including debt.
This is a slight haircut from its $47B valuation in fall 2019 when
full of BS charismatic founder Adam Neumann was burning billions of dollars from SoftBank.
For SoftBank, which put $10B+ into WeWork, it’s a somewhat miraculous save.
At its bubbliest valuation…
WeWork convinced the world it was a tech company. Under the leadership of CEO Sandeep Mathrani, it’s now just an office rental play.
Among the highlights from WeWork’s announcement:
- The company dropped or amended leases for 200+ locations (today, it has 851 locations in 152 cities).
- It shifted its focus to enterprise companies, which now make up >50% of the client base (up from 10% in 2015).
- It survived 2020 with revenues of $3.2B (unchanged from 2019) even as the world went remote.
The company is still billions in the red. But with the world slowly moving back to a hybrid work arrangement, its plug-and-play office space offering is well-positioned to bounce back.
As for The Hustle, we are not going anywhere. If we left, who would be around for Adam Neumann’s next crazy venture?
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