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Goldman Sachs Agrees To $1.75B WeWork Credit Line For SoftBank

SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son

SoftBank Group has found an ally in its attempt to drag WeWork back from the brink of financial ruin.

Investment banking titan Goldman Sachs has agreed to arrange a $1.75B line of credit for WeWork, Bloomberg reports.

SoftBank is listed as the primary borrower in the deal, reportedly so that Goldman can sell the loan to potential partners as a safer bet. WeWork is named as a co-borrower.

The credit would replace $1.1B worth of previous loans, one of which had terms onerous enough to place WeWork at risk of running out of money before SoftBank stepped in with a $9.5B bailout package in November to take 80% ownership.

A previous bond sale when WeWork was still under Adam Neumann's leadership required the company to keep $500M in cash reserves, hampering its spending power, Bloomberg reports.

After the financing deal is completed, SoftBank will seek another debt package worth $3.3B to complete the non-equity portion of its bailout package, Bloomberg reports. The $4.5M in equity is split between a $1.5B investment that SoftBank accelerated onto WeWork's balance sheet in November, and a $3B tender offer to buy stock from existing shareholders, including Neumann.

The emergency financing was necessary as a result of the spectacular failure that was WeWork's attempted initial public offering in September. Goldman had partnered with JPMorgan Chase to sponsor that IPO, promising the startup a $6B loan package if it could raise $3B in equity.

As the Japanese investment giant has pieced together the money to fund its takeover of WeWork, it has installed leadership to implement SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son's 90-day turnaround plan. SoftBank executive and former Sprint Chairman Marcelo Claure now leads the startup as executive chairman, with Ralf Wenzel and Mike Bucey also joining WeWork's C-suite from SoftBank executive positions.

Financially, SoftBank has changed its focus with WeWork as well. Much of its private investment into WeWork that drove its valuation sky-high was conducted through its tech-focused Vision Fund, backed primarily by Abu Dhabi's Mubadala Investment Co. and the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia.

The Vision Fund has lost billions this year as the struggles of Uber and WeWork, two of its biggest investments, have continued.