WeWork, the 4-year-old shared office and coworking space provider, is now valued at $5 billion after securing $355 million in its latest funding round and on the heels of signing a 40,000-square-foot lease for a Miami Beach space in November. The valuation puts the company in the same league as one of Silicon Valley’s greatest successes, Pinterest, and values it at $1.5 billion more than Trulia.
WeWork’s co-founder Adam Neumann told the Wall Street Journal that the company aspires to be a meeting ground for the next generation of entrepreneurs.
“We happen to need buildings just like Uber happens to need cars, just like Airbnb happens to need apartments,” Neumann told the newspaper.
This latest financing round, which closed on Monday, was led by funds and accounts managed by T. Rowe Price Associates as well as Goldman Sachs Group and clients of Wellington Management, according to the newspaper. Prior investors J.P. Morgan Chase, Harvard Management Company and Benchmark also participated in this round. The news that WeWork was finalizing the funding was first reported by Fortune.
Last month, the company was valued at $1.5 billion after securing a $150 million investment from JPMorgan, Boston Properties’ founder Mort Zuckerman, and others.
“If I showed you their cash-flow statement, you would not compare it to a real estate company,” T. Rowe Price’s Henry Ellenbogen told the Journal. “You’d compare it to a brand or tech company—maybe Chipotle or Uber.” [WSJ] — Claire Moses