SoftBank now values WeWork at $2.9 billion as of March 31, down from $7.3 billion as of December 31, following its failed IPO. SoftBank has reportedly invested $18.5 billion in the company – a historically disastrous investment that will be studied in business schools for years to come.
- Worth Noting: WeWork Chairman Marcelo Claure said on Twitter that he and Son are still “huge believers” in what he called the “new” WeWork and its management team, ″We will continue to support the company. We have no doubt that WeWork will emerge from #COVID19 stronger than ever and we are committed to profitability by 2021.”
- Dig Deeper: WeWork’s private valuation was as high as $47 billion before its botched IPO last year. CNBC noted that the co-working company’s business could suffer even greater losses now that the coronavirus pandemic has made coworking a dangerous activity. With many workers adjusting to their home offices, some companies are reconsidering their needs when it comes to office space altogether.
- Heard on the Street: SoftBank’s Masayoshi Son: “We made a failure on investing in WeWork and I’ve been admitting that several times I was foolish.”
- Vision Fund is a fantasy: Masa said SoftBank was continuing to invest cautiously in new companies through a new fund called Vision Fund 2, but he said he has given up—at least for now—on the idea of trying to get money from outside investors, WSJ noted. Masa said, “Sometimes I get asked if the funding for Vision Fund 2 is OK…It’s not.”