Microsoft to take 300 WeWork memberships for NY sales team

Deal includes permanent space in Manhattan

Nov.November 07, 2016 02:00 PM
From left: Microsoft's Bill Gates and WeWork'sMiguel McKelvey and Adam Neumann
From left: Microsoft’s Bill Gates and WeWork’sMiguel McKelvey and Adam Neumann

From the New York website: WeWork and Microsoft are putting a ring on it.

Microsoft has signed a deal to take space in two WeWork locations and 300 WeWork memberships for its Office 365 sales team in New York. The two companies are calling it a “city as a campus” model.

The partnership will give 300 employees, about 70 percent of the sales team, access to all WeWork’s Manhattan and Brooklyn locations through the company’s “We” membership. Microsoft will have permanent space at the Chelsea location at 115 West 18th Street and at 25 West Broadway in the Financial District, serving as a base for their roving salespeople.

This fits into WeWork’s strategy of attracting large, corporate clients looking for flexible options, and expanding beyond freelancers and entrepreneurs as their user base. Their largest corporate client, HSBC, recently took 300 desks in Hong Kong.

The structure of Microsoft’s deal is a little different because of its various components. “The approach that they’ve taken is to cover all their bases,” a spokesperson for WeWork told The Real Deal. “It highlights the diversity of needs for any real estate portfolio.”

Microsoft and WeWork had a deal since earlier this year to offer WeWork members a discount on the Studio 365 software suite. Now, as part of the deal, WeWork will adopt Office 365 for its employees. Microsoft announced its new group chat software and Slack competitor “Teams” this week.

Microsoft will also take touch-down space in Philadelphia and Portland, and 40 desks in WeWork’s Buckhead location for its Atlanta-based advertising team.

WeWork, which has been battered by news of majorly slashed profit forecasts, has been looking for new revenue channels. Last month, TRD reported that WeWork is preparing to launch an investment vehicle to buy real estate. It was most recently valued at $16.9 billion.

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