Bobby Yip / Reuters
Once upon a time, WeWork was an organization that constructed and rented out coworking areas the place freelancers or small startups might go on their computer systems, drink flavored water, and go to the communal beer keg.
But these days aren’t any extra. Today, WeWork is a culture company valued at $20 billion. It’s a burgeoning real estate empire, lifestyle brand, and fitness business rolled into one. In the final yr, WeWork turned the most valuable startup in New York City, and the fifth most respected startup on the earth. But whereas WeWork claims to be utilizing large information and synthetic intelligence to design its places of work, some say it’s probably not a tech firm, which usually promote platforms or apps that may scale to thousands and thousands of individuals.
Given the sheer scope of the businesses WeWork acquired, the initiatives it launched, and the true property its CEO purchased in 2017, some have known as the corporate unpredictable, even crazy. But as Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son has instructed WeWork CEO Adam Neumann, in a battle between a sensible man and a loopy man, the crazy man usually wins.
In a weblog publish, WeWork didn't provide many specifics on what it plans to do subsequent with the numerous billions it's raised, however it stated, “We’re encouraged by what we have accomplished so far, and we are excited to continue on this adventure to humanize the way we work, live, and connect with the world.”
WeWork raised a ton of cash this yr, contemplating it doesn’t truly promote a tech services or products:
$300 million from Softbank in March
$500 million from a gaggle of traders, together with Softbank, in July
By August, WeWork had raised a complete of $4.4 billion for the yr
WeWork then took that cash and spent it on some ~attention-grabbing~ issues:
- Expanding into the world of health, opening a New York City health club that’s shockingly known as WeWork Wellness, not WeWorkOut
- Acquiring Fieldlens, an app (that WeWork used) which helps on-the-job employees at a development website talk
- Acquiring a Singaporean co-working competitor
- Acquiring an Israeli gross sales tech firm
- Acquiring a coding academy known as the Flatiron School, which provides WeWork tenants entry to instructional sources
- Buying (along with Rhone Capital) an previous Lord & Taylor constructing in New York City for a part of a whopping $850 million, a move that confused trade observers
- Launching a grade school in New York City. Called WeDevelop, the varsity will embrace classes in enterprise from entrepreneurs conveniently housed subsequent door
- Acquiring Meetup, an expert and social networking platform that helps deliver individuals collectively in meatspace primarily based on their hobbies and pursuits
- Investing $32 million in New York City female-identifying-only skilled membership The Wing
- Hiring the founding father of Soulcycle to handle the WeWork model
- Launching a secretive startup incubator known as Area 51 with “all of the facilities of a fertile paradise.”
WeWork was additionally reported to have bought a wave pool firm this yr, however a spokesperson for WeWork stated the wave pool firm was actually acquired in 2016
CEO Adam Neumann additionally spent some WeWork cash this yr; he cashed out $100 million of his shares in October and proceeded to purchase four multimillion dollar properties in New York City.
Other issues it’s been steered WeWork might spend its cash on embrace retirement communities, funeral homes, and cemeteries.
Have an thought for what else WeWork might spend its monumental amount of money on? Sound off within the feedback!
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