Santander Bank Subleases 160K SF From WeWork at 437 Madison

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WeWork landed an enterprise deal with one of the major retail banks in the Northeast this week.

The co-working giant subleased 160,000 square feet at 437 Madison Avenue to Santander Bank, representing over a third of the 362,000-square-foot office building owned by the William Kaufman Organization and Travelers Companies, The Real Deal first reported. The asking rent was $90 per square foot, per TRD.

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The deal is in keeping with how WeWork transacts with large companies — those with over 500 employees — or have large space needs, according to sources familiar with the transaction.

But the terms of the deal remain unclear as WeWork declined to comment and Santander Bank only confirmed that it is relocating its New York City headquarters from 45 East 53rd Street to the 40-story 437 Madison Avenue between East 50th and East 51st streets.  

In addition, representatives for the brokerages involved in the deal, JLL and Avison Young, did not respond to requests for comment.

WeWork, the publicly traded coworking company, originally leased space at 437 Madison to operate an outpost focused on large corporate users. 

JLL’s Clark Finney brokered the deal for WeWork while Arthur Mirante and Mitti Liebersohn of Avison Young represented Santander. 

Since Sandeep Mathrani took the helm of WeWork after its failed initial public offering attempt in 2019, the company has shed locations and laid off staff in an effort to turn around its cash-bleeding business model.

WeWork and a competitor, IWG, accounted for 48 percent of the 12.2 million square feet of flex office space given back to landlords since mid-2020, according to a recent CBRE report.

WeWork picked up Common Desk in January, marking the first acquisition after going public in October 2021. The deal will add 23 flexible workspace locations across 13 cities in Texas and North Carolina to WeWork’s portfolio when it officially closes in March, Commercial Observer reported

Meanwhile,WeWork continued to bleed funds with $802 million in net losses for the third quarter of 2021. This was, however, an improvement compared to the $941 million in losses it reported for the same quarter a year prior.

Mark Hallum can be reached at mhallum@commercialobserver.com.