WeWork (“The We Company”) was expected to have one of the highest IPOs in the summer of 2019. But then the company filed S-1 paperwork. The S-1 itself was weird and began with the phrase “We dedicate this to the energy of we.” The paperwork revealed that CEO Adam Neumann was a risk factor, and outlined a succession plan that, if anything happened to Neumann, let his wife or a family trustee pick a new CEO. The biggest changes in the company started around four months ago.
August 14: WeWork files for S-1 with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
September 24: The New York Times reported on September 24th that WeWork CEO Adam Neumann will be stepping down. Neumann was expected to remain with the startup as chairman. But he gave up the majority control of the company.
September 30: WeWork announces it will be withdrawing the S-1. The company decided to postpone their IPO to focus on our core business.
October 13: The Wall Street Journal reported that SoftBank Group has prepared a bid that would save WeWork, just weeks before the company’s imminent collapse. SoftBank Group is a multibillion-dollar Japanese technology conglomerate and investment firm.
October 22: SoftBank reportedly ends WeWork ownership debacle with a potential $1.7 billion payout for co-founder Adam Neumann. Adam becomes a “board observer” without voting power.
October 22: WeWork and SoftBank announce that the Japanese tech giant buy out around 80 percent of the real estate company. SoftBank also announced that Marcelo Claure, the former CEO of Sprint will be the new executive chairman at WeWork.
October 24: SoftBank says it has now invested $18.5 billion in WeWork, ‘more than the GDP’ of Bolivia, which has 11.5 million people.
November 5: WeWork-owned Meetup confirms it has shed as much as 25% of its workforce, most of which were employees of the company’s engineering department.
November 6: SoftBank leader Masayoshi Son admitted that it was a mistake to have invested in WeWork. During an earnings conference, Son said that WeWork’s troubles resulted in quite a large impact on SoftBank and its Vision Fund.
November 8: The acquisition of WeWork by SoftBank Group left the future of many employees in jeopardy. The employees then formed a WeWorkers Coalition which sent an open letter to their company’s management that at once acknowledged the grim reality of their situation and also the We Company’s future.
November 8: WeWork announced that it is going to get rid of the following businesses:
- Managed by Q
- Space IQ
- Wave Garden
- The Wing
November 11: According to The Wall Street Journal, WeWork was in discussions to hire John Legere in discussions with T-Mobile US Inc. CEO John Legere to take over leadership of the startup. Marcelo Claure who was recently named WeWork’s executive chairman had worked with Legere earlier. This could be a reason why Legere’s name is one of the first to pop up as a potential leader for WeWork.
November 15: Earlier it was reported that T-mobile CEO John Legere could become the new CEO of WeWork. However, Legere does not intend to take the CEO role, despite the rumors earlier.
November 18: WeWork is reportedly being investigated by the New York State Attorney General. The Attorney General’s office’s questions include if WeWork founder and former CEO Adam Neumann engaged in self-dealing.
November 21: According to CNBC, WeWork is being hit with layoffs. marking the latest downturn in the wake of the company’s disastrous attempted IPO. CNBC reported that WeWork is letting 2,400 employees go.
The case of WeWork has been a dumpster fire and there is no predicting what the next move for the company will be.