WeWork to miss 2020 targets because of coronavirus

The embattled co-working giant has kept most locations open during the pandemic

WeWork's Marcelo Claure and Sandeep Mathrani (Credit: Getty Images)
WeWork's Marcelo Claure and Sandeep Mathrani (Credit: Getty Images)

WeWork says it won’t be hitting its targets this year because of the coronavirus.

In a letter to bondholders, CEO Sandeep Mathrani and Executive Chairman Marcelo Claure wrote they no longer expect to meet their 2020 targets, Bloomberg reported. The co-working firm’s gloomy outlook came in a lengthy footnote to the letter.

“We are in the process of reviewing and reevaluating the previously disclosed forward-looking information related to our other interim targets,” the executives wrote.

According to the letter, WeWork’s revenue rose 90 percent in 2019 to $3.5 billion. The executives did not say whether the embattled co-working giant was profitable last year.

The letter lists a number of measures WeWork is taking to confront the pandemic, including “enhanced cleanings and suspended events across our locations” and an “enhanced work-from-home policy,” but offers no specifics on the implementation of those measures.

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After its botched initial public offering in the fall, WeWork has been rapidly shedding assets, sometimes at a steep discount, in a bid to reach profitability. It also promised to eliminate 2,400 jobs in November, long before the coronavirus pandemic.

WeWork has drawn criticism from its customers for keeping most of its buildings open during the Covid-19 outbreak. They say the policy is out of step with the many stay-at-home orders now in effect across the nation.

The firm has also received criticism for offering $100-a-day bonuses to staff to ensure their attendance.

Last week, WeWork’s chief financial backer, SoftBank, signaled that its multibillion-dollar bailout of the beleaguered co-working company was far from a sure thing. [Bloomberg] — Georgia Kromrei