November 21, 2019

WeWork to lay off 2,400 workers worldwide

Embattled office-sharing startup WeWork said Thursday it will lay off 2,400 employees worldwide as the company struggles to reorganize amid mounting losses.

The news comes in the wake of the company’s failed attempt to launch an initial public offering.

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The dismissed workers “will receive severance, continued benefits, and other forms of assistance to aid in their career transition,” a spokesperson said in a statement.

The company told shareholders earlier this month it had lost almost $1.3 billion in the third quarter, more than twice the losses recorded in the same period a year earlier.

The painful layoffs underscore the decline of what had previously been one of America’s most celebrated startups that left a mammoth footprint in the commercial real estate of major world capitals.

As investors questioned the company’s value, WeWork in September scrapped plans for its Wall Street debut, forced out chief executive Adam Neumann and was bailed out by Japan’s SoftBank Group.

Neumann stepped down from the company’s board of directors with a $1.7 billion exit package while the company’s value was slashed to $8 billion — a far cry from its $47 billion valuation at the start of this year and just a fraction of the sum envisioned as part of the failed IPO.

Thursday’s statement said the layoffs had begun “weeks ago” in regions around the world and were necessary “to create a more efficient organization.”

“These are incredibly talented professionals and we are grateful for the important roles they have played in building WeWork over the last decade,” it said.