WeWork’s Adam Neumann steps down as chief executive

Co-Founder and CEO of WeWork, Adam Neumann. Image: TechCrunch [CC BY 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)]

WeWork’s Adam Neumann has quite as chief executive of the office rental firm.

Neumann said the decision to step down as CEO is in the best interest of the company.

Neumann will continue on as non-executive chairman of the board.

WeWork’s board of directors appointed Artie Minson, formerly co-president and chief financial officer, and Sebastian Gunningham, formerly vice chairman a co-CEOs of the company.

Since 2010, the company has expanded from one office in New York City over 500 locations across 29 countries.

The company was valued by SoftBank at $47bn (£37bn) in its most recent investment round.

In mid-August, the firm announced plans to go public, however this plan was postponed last week as several investors expressed concerns regarding the valuation and management and public image of Neumann.

Adam Neumann said: “As co-founder of WeWork, I am so proud of this team and the incredible company that we have built over the last decade. Our global platform now spans 111 cities in 29 countries, serving more than 527,000 members each day.

“While our business has never been stronger, in recent weeks, the scrutiny directed toward me has become a significant distraction, and I have decided that it is in the best interest of the company to step down as chief executive. Thank you to my colleagues, our members, our landlord partners, and our investors for continuing to believe in this great business.”

Artie Minson and Sebastian Gunningham said: “We would like to thank Adam for his vision and his passion in building WeWork over the past 9 years. Our innovative membership model, beautiful designs and inventive community offerings have changed the way individuals and enterprises around the world think about their workspaces. It is an incredible honor to lead WeWork during this important moment in the company’s history.

“Our core business is strong and we will be taking clear actions to balance WeWork’s high growth, profitability and unique member experience while also evaluating the optimal timing for an IPO. We are committed to the continued success of our members, partners, employees and shareholders on this new journey.”