In less than a decade WeWork has created a brand with global recognition that investors valued at $47 billion in its latest fundraising. That valuation is 10 times the market cap of its larger rival, Zug, Switzerland-based IWG Plc.
“There’s a lot of desire to handle this IPO in an intelligent way and present a viable business model to the Street and to the analysts because nobody wants WeWork to fail,” said Michael Cohen, president of greater New York City at brokerage Colliers International Group Inc.
Property owners have embraced flexible workspaces that allow a variety of tenants to house temporary operations at the same site without signing long-term leases. But short-term contracts pose an investment risk if tenants vacate and revenue dries up during a downturn.