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WeWork pulls its public offering

October 1, 2019

WeWork is officially pulling its public offering.

 

The firm’s co-CEOs, Artie Minson and Sebastian Gunningham, said in a statement that WeWork “decided to postpone our IPO to focus on our core business.”

 

“We have every intention to operate WeWork as a public company and look forward to revisiting the public equity markets in the future,” the statement said.

 

Last month, the firm’s S-1 filing to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission set off a firestorm among investors and observers after it laid bare the company’s precarious financial position, including the fact that its growing losses were double revenue. It also included information about questionable loans and transactions with its charismatic CEO Adam Neumann.

 

As scrutiny mounted, the company’s largest investor, Japan-based SoftBank and its founder Masayoshi Son lobbied to oust Neumann — ending a tight bond between the two men that had fueled WeWork’s phenomenal growth. Neumann stepped down as CEO last week, and now serves as non-executive chairman of the company.

 

Monday’s disclosure  provides no clearer guidance on WeWork’s future. The company initially planned to raise at least $9 billion in the IPO — including a $6 billion debt deal backed by multiple banks — which would have offset its mounting losses for years to come.

 

But without that cash infusion, the company is set to run out of money by next spring. It has at least $47 billion in outstanding lease commitments to landlords over the next 10 to 15 years.

 

Other reports in recent days suggest the company is in talks with multiple private investors to raise more capital, but few details are known.

 

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