[SAN FRANCISCO] WeWork Cos saw its overall membership and revenue shrink for the third quarter compared to the quarter before, as the pandemic continues to hammer the co-working company. New York-based WeWork told its employees that while sales of new desks ticked up slightly for the quarter, revenue fell 8 per cent and its membership totals were down 11 per cent from the prior three months, according to a staff email seen by Bloomberg.
WeWork saw US$811 million in sales for the quarter, and negative free cash flow of US$517 million, which executives pointed out was still an improvement over the the third quarter of 2019, when its attempt at an initial public offering (IPO) flopped and the company burned through US$1.2 billion.
WeWork has also been steadily cutting back its leases: The company left 66 locations and renegotiated lower rent on more than 150 others. WeWork ended the quarter with 542,000 memberships across its 859 locations. "While Covid continues to present unique and uncertain challenges that we must actively manage, our results this quarter show signs of select key metrics stabilising," WeWork chief executive officer Sandeep Mathrani and the company's new chief financial officer, Benjamin Dunham, wrote in the email.
After its failed attempt at an IPO a last year, WeWork has aggressively sold off some of its acquisitions, closed some business lines, eliminated thousands of jobs and cut other expenses. Mr Mathrani told reporters last month that the company is still aiming to be profitable next year and is eyeing an IPO after it reaches that milestone.
The company's leadership believes WeWork will benefit after the pandemic recedes and more companies, uncertain about their office needs after months of working from home, will opt for WeWork's flexible offerings. "This is our moment," the executives wrote in the memo.