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WeWork Is Exploring a Plan to Sublease Its Manhattan Headquarters

The company is considering options for its Chelsea-based global headquarters.

(Bloomberg)—WeWork is exploring subleasing its global headquarters in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighborhood, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

The co-working company is considering options for its West 18th Street location ranging from seeking tenants for specific floors to renting out the entire building, said the people, who requested anonymity because the deliberations are private. The SoftBank-backed company hasn’t made a decision, one of the people said.

The company’s 18th Street headquarters was home to WeGrow, the now-shuttered school started by co-founder Adam Neumann and his wife Rebekah Neumann.

WeWork constantly evaluates its use of real estate, especially in response to potential demand from tenants, said one of the people. For instance, its 53 Beach St. location in Tribeca morphed over time toward housing paying customers, rather than employees, while its 85 Broad St. location in the Financial District saw a movement in the opposite direction.

The company’s New York employees also occupy space at 620 Avenue of the Americas.

A WeWork spokeswoman declined to comment.

The company -- which laid off staff last month and signaled that more job cuts would take place in May -- has been seeking to minimize its sizable lease liabilities, including by proposing revenue-sharing agreements to landlords. At the same time, it has offered customers retention-linked discounts, as restrictions imposed by governments during the Covid-19 pandemic continue to promote working from home.

One property that was previously designated as WeWork’s new headquarters, the flagship Lord & Taylor building on Fifth Avenue in midtown Manhattan, was sold earlier this year to Inc.

To contact the reporters on this story: Natalie Wong in New York at [email protected];

Gillian Tan in New York at [email protected].

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Craig Giammona at [email protected];

Alan Goldstein at [email protected]

Christine Maurus

© 2020 Bloomberg L.P.

TAGS: Leasing
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