Can WeWork survive?

By Katrina Brooker3 minute ReadYesterday, in a bid to save itself, the We Company pushed out CEO and cofounder Adam Neumann.Neumann, who remains non-executive chairman and We’s largest individual shareholder, told employees in an all-staff memo Tuesday that “our business has never been stronger, but since the announcement of our IPO, too much of the…

Can WeWork survive?

By Katrina Brooker3 minute ReadYesterday, in a bid to save itself, the We Company pushed out CEO and cofounder Adam Neumann.Neumann, who remains non-executive chairman and We’s largest individual shareholder, told employees in an all-staff memo Tuesday that “our business has never been stronger, but since the announcement of our IPO, too much of the focus has been placed on me.”Investors, rivals, and even many employees are applauding Neumann’s departure, and many would certainly agree with the latter part of the former CEO’s quote. “Enough of this ‘saving the world business,’” says Santosh Rao, who covers pre-IPO startups as head of research at Manhattan Venture Partners—making reference to Neumann’s stated ambition that We’s mission has been to elevate the world’s consciousness. “Investors are saying, ‘Show me the money.’”But ousting Neumann doesn’t fix We’s troubles. The company has $6 billion in debt and $47 billion in lease obligations over the next 15 years. As of August, it had $2.5 billion in cash. Its IPO prospectus revealed that the company loses a dollar for every dollar it makes.The company will require a massive restructuring to start to address these issues.WeWork’s efforts to be a global coworking player, expanding into regions such as China and Russia via joint ventures, present an acute challenge, insiders say. Already, landlords in these markets are callin
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