In new startup, WeWork founder attracts funding from Andreessen Horowitz
After leaving the “back door” of WeWork, the company he founded, Adam Neumann has just attracted manager Andreessen Horowitz to his new real estate company, called Flow.
WeWork founder Adam Neumann left the company in 2019, under a series of questions about the operation’s governance and management. Valued at $47 billion, the company was the star of Softbank’s portfolio, but saw its IPO fail in the face of these problems and billion-dollar losses. In that cauldron, its valuation also melted.
However, the American entrepreneur did not leave the scene at a loss, as he pocketed just over US$ 700 billion in a deal with investors at the time. Now, three years later, he’s back and shows he hasn’t lost his “talent” to attract the big names in the venture capital industry.
In a post on Monday, August 15, Marc Andreessen, one of the names behind Andreessen Horowitz, an iconic Silicon Valley manager, revealed that the fund is investing in Flow, Neumann’s new venture.
Andreessen noted that Andreessen Horowitz was “excited” to partner with its peers at Flow. He did not reveal the value of the investment in the startup. But the disclosure was accompanied by a series of praise for the entrepreneur.
“Adam is a visionary leader who has revolutionized the world’s second largest asset class – commercial real estate – by bringing community and branding to an industry where none existed before,” he noted.
In the post, he noted that Adam and the WeWork story have been exhaustively narrated and analyzed, “sometimes with precision”. And he pointed out that, despite all the energy put into this roof, its essential role in redesigning the sector was underestimated.
“We understand how difficult it is to build something like this and we love to see entrepreneurs build on their past successes and grow from the lessons learned,” he wrote. “For Adam, the successes and lessons are many and we are excited to continue on this journey with him and his colleagues building the future of housing.”
In that direction, Andreessen said it is only natural that, in his first venture since WeWork, Neumann returns to the theme of connecting people through transforming their physical spaces and building communities where everyone spends more time: their homes.
In the post, there is not much information, however, about the Flow model. Andreessen only emphasizes that the proposal involves “rethinking the entire value chain”, which includes everything from the way buildings are purchased and maintained, to the way residents interact with the developments and the way the values involved are distributed between them. the interested parties.
In January of this year, a report by The Wall Street Journal showed that Neumann had been applying part of the funds obtained from leaving WeWork to return to the real estate sector. Among other moves, he would have spent more than US$ 1 billion in the acquisition of 4 thousand apartments in cities such as Atlanta, Fort Lauderdale, Miami and Nashville.
According to the newspaper, the idea behind the investment would be to create a brand to operate in the vacation rental segment. For that, Neumann would be recruiting executives who helped him build WeWork.
At the same time, one of the plans would include plugging Alfred, a startup in which he is an investor, into the new company’s platform. Alfred has a portfolio of services for buildings that includes concierge, dog walkers and management software, among other resources.
As Neumann tries to chart a new path, WeWork went public in October 2021 through a merger with BowX Acquisition, a Special Purpose Acquisition Company (SPAC). In the process, the company was valued at $8 billion. Today, the company is valued at US$ 4.3 billion.