Adam Neumann “not afraid” to take WeWork public

Co-working company is valued at $16B 
July 13, 2016 11:15AM

From left: WeWork co-founders Miguel McKelvey and Adam Neumann

From the New York website: WeWork co-founder Adam Neumann said Monday he is “not afraid” to take the company public.

“If you’re asking me, ‘Are we as a team committed to monetize for investors and employees?’ The answer is 100 percent,” he said at a conference hosted by Fortune Magazine in Colorado.

Its most recent private funding round valued the co-working and co-living company at $16 billion, but Neumann appeared uncertain about the price tag it could reach in the public market. Private valuations, he said, are “what one person is willing to sell for and one person is willing to buy. Value in the public markets — that becomes a different story.”

WeWork, which has 109 locations in 30 cities, is the poster child for the co-working boom. Its investors include real estate bigwigs Bill Rudin and Mort Zuckerman. Last week, The Real Deal dove into possible reasons why investors believe it’s worth $16 billion.

Neumann, who co-founded the company with Miguel McKelvey, is not known as someone who likes to publicly talk about money and valuations.

“For such a spiritual country, I’m surprised from the amount of talk I heard about valuation, and raising money, and bubbles, and building big companies — that is not the goal,” Neumann, the co-founder and CEO of WeWork, said in January at the launch of the Startup India initiative in New Delhi. [Fortune]Konrad Putzier