WeWork Picks Up Flex Office Provider Common Desk

The acquisition is WeWork’s first since Sandeep Mathrani took over for Adam Neumann and the first since going public


WeWork will pick up Dallas-based flexible workspace provider Common Desk, the coworking giant’s first purchase of a company since Sandeep Mathrani took over as CEO in February 2020 and began selling off a bunch of Adam Neumann-era acquisitions.

The deal, announced Tuesday, is set to close in March and will add 23 flexible workspace locations across 13 cities in Texas and North Carolina to WeWork’s portfolio, with 19 of them run under management agreements instead of traditional leases, according to WeWork.

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A spokesperson for WeWork declined to provide the price of the acquisition.

“With an eye towards partners most aligned with our priorities, Common Desk presented itself as a sophisticated operator with a compelling approach to providing a top-notch member experience without sacrificing strong margins or an exceptional product,” Mathrani said in a statement. “On the heels of a strong year for our business, Common Desk’s operational expertise and portfolio of first-class space will further bolster our value proposition as we focus on strategic growth.”

Common Desk was founded in 2012 and currently has 4,000 customers. It will change its name to Common Desk, a WeWork Company when the acquisition closes.

The acquisition also marks the first for WeWork since it went public in October 2021 and a shift from its 2020 strategy of offloading companies purchased by Neumann before the company’s disastrous initial public offering attempt in 2019.

In 2020, WeWork sold off office management startup Managed by Q for $25 million and social network Meetup for an undisclosed amount and offloaded its stake in women’s workspace provider The Wing.

After going public, WeWork still saw $802 million in net losses for the third quarter of 2021. That’s  an improvement from the $941 million in losses it posted a year prior, though. Also, it pulled in $661 million in revenue in the third quarter, an uptick from $593 million in the previous quarter, but a drop from $811 million during the same period in 2020.

WeWork announced earlier this month that preliminary sales results for December 2021 saw consolidated gross desk sales of 66,000, an increase from the 43,000 in October and 55,000 in November. Preliminary numbers show a total of 164,000 desk sales in the fourth quarter of 2021, an increase from 153,000 in the third quarter.

Nicholas Rizzi can be reached at nrizzi@commercialobserver.com.