WeWork China is attracting money

Japan’s SoftBank, its Saudi-backed Vision Fund and the Singapore sovereign wealth fund Temasek are ploughing money into a WeWork subsidiary in China, lifting its value fivefold to $5 billion. The $500 million investment round also drew the backing of private equity firms Trustbridge Partners and Hony Capital… A year ago a similar $500 million funding round, led by SoftBank and Hony Capital valued the China subsidiary at $1 billion. The shared office space provider has become a giant in the global property market, buying or leasing landmark buildings including the Lord & Taylor department store on Manhattan’s Fifth Avenue and One Poultry in the City of London. It is also seeking to lease the century-old Flatiron Building in New York… The company’s rapid growth has propelled it to a $20 billion valuation, and a long-mooted fundraising backed by the Vision Fund could lift it further to $35 billion… If it is able to clinch a valuation that high, the company would rank among the most valuable US startups, surpassing other privately held groups such as Airbnb and Elon Musk’s SpaceX. The Chinese subsidiary has been seen by its backers as the next area of growth for WeWork as its business in the US matures.

 

Eric Platt

 

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