Unraveling the Epic Rise: WeWork’s Most Outrageous Moments

WeWork, the coworking startup that once promised to revolutionize office work, filed for bankruptcy this week after years of unraveling. Despite co-founder Adam Neumann’s charismatic sales pitch and vision, WeWork’s valuation peaked at $47 billion before its downfall. Neumann was ousted in 2019 but walked away with a multi-million-dollar golden parachute.

The company’s demise left legendary SoftBank investor Masayoshi Son to suffer reputational damage and many early employees to lose out. WeWork’s wild rise and fall has shattered the myth of tech founders being visionary geniuses who can foresee key trends years ahead of time. Here are four of the wildest moments from WeWork.

Neumann’s affinity for marijuana was well-known, with reports of him smoking pot on private jets and leaving their interiors caked in vomit. He also had a penchant for tequila, once mixing alcohol with layoffs, firing staff and then having trays of plastic shot glasses filled with tequila brought in for the remaining employees.

WeWork, under Neumann’s leadership, also ventured into the education and housing markets with the launch of WeGrow, a primary school with tuition starting at $36,000, and WeLive, essentially hip dorm rooms rented to young professionals. The company disentangled itself from these ventures before its first attempt to go public in 2019 led to Neumann’s ousting.

After Neumann’s departure, the Covid-19 pandemic emerged, dealing a new blow to WeWork’s core business of bringing people together in coworking spaces. With many office workers turning to remote work, WeWork has struggled to turn the ship around. Neumann expressed hope for the company’s future even after the bankruptcy filing.

It’s evident that WeWork’s rise and fall have had far-reaching repercussions and have shattered longstanding myths about the tech sector and its leaders.


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