WeWork moving into rival’s turf with lease at 135 Madison

Rosen Group-owned property is already home to a Blender space
By Konrad Putzier | October 24, 2017 07:00AM

WeWork’s head of coworking Richard Gomel and 135 Madison Avenue

Manhattan’s co-working market is getting more crowded, literally. WeWork is opening a new office location at the Rosen Group’s 135 Madison Avenue, which is already home to rival Blender.

It wasn’t immediately clear how many floors WeWork is taking in the 12-story building, but the company confirmed it inked a lease. Rosen did not respond to a request for comment.

The property, which sits at the corner of East 31st Street, spans 217,648 square feet.

Blender’s co-founder Scott Sassoon said he doesn’t see the new WeWork space as competition. On the contrary, he sees it as an opportunity to poach customers.

“You can only eat McDonald’s hamburgers for so long until you want to try a Shake Shack burger,” he said.

Blender — which so far operates a single location, on the building’s eighth floor — markets itself as a slightly more upscale, pricier alternative to WeWork.

NoMad has a particularly high density of flexible office spaces, and competition between startups is fierce.  Knotel, for example, has accused WeWork of corporate espionage and of trying to poach its tenants with offers of free rent. The startup recently formed an alliance with co-working company Grind.