On Monday, WeWork, an American company that rents coworking spaces to freelance workers and businesses around the world, reached an agreement controlled administration . Softbank, the Japanese business conglomerate that has owned WeWork since 2019, has applied to be authorized appeal to chapter 11 , an American bankruptcy law similar to the Italian extraordinary administration. Until 2019, WeWork was one of the most valuable startups in the world, and for a time, the most valuable in the United States.
By going into receivership, which will only take effect in the United States and Canada and is not expected to affect the company’s operations in other countries, WeWork plans to cancel some costly leases to cut expenses. The company also agreed with most of its creditors to convert money owed by WeWork into company stock, repaying debts totaling about $3 billion.
WeWork grew very quickly, but at the same time suffered significant financial losses: certain management problems and the COVID-19 pandemic, which generalized remote work, contributed to decreasing the demand for offices, worsening a process already carried out before. The company then found itself having to pay very high rents for coworking spaces that remained empty or little used, which led to significant losses.