Oct 21, 2019

Scoop: Adam Neumann will determine WeWork's fate

Adam Neumann

Photo: Michael Kovac/Getty Images for WeWork

Japanese investment firm SoftBank will pay former WeWork CEO and current non-executive chairman Adam Neumann around $200 million to leave the board of directors, give up his voting shares and support SoftBank's takeover, according to multiple sources familiar with the situation.

Why it matters: It's a dramatic — and legally dubious — development in a saga that has seen the embattled company plunge from a $47 billion valuation to below $8 billion. SoftBank's board will vote on Tuesday, but that's irrelevant, since Neumann's 10 votes per share are the only ones that matter. It's unclear if Neumann's successors Sebastian Gunningham and Artie Minson will stay on as co-CEOs.

Details: The deal from SoftBank will come from SoftBank Corp., not the SoftBank Vision Fund. It will include a $3 billion tender offer to employees at $20 a share, plus additional equity.

  • It's unclear what the plan for layoffs will be. If and when that is announced, it will be up to SoftBank to decide.
  • A source says that SoftBank plans to install Marcelo Claure as chairman, succeeding Neumann.

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