New WeWork Service Looks A Lot Like A Brokerage
"We will now be able to offer holistic real estate solutions — both within and outside of WeWork," WeWork Chief Growth Officer Dave Fano said. "We will help them find office space best suited to their requirements, giving them access to inventory they would not otherwise have."
Fano, who made the announcement in a company blog post, said the pilot project will be specifically aimed at small and medium-sized businesses, whether they are members of WeWork or not.
WeWork Space Services will also offer clients a year of free membership through its Global Access, which allows members to use WeWork locations.
Presumably, WeWork Space Service clients would be offered paid membership after the 12-month free period, as well as access to other WeWork services for which they would pay. Currently, WeWork has partnerships with vendors that offer such products as software, loans and insurance.
Fano also touted the brokerage-like expansion of WeWork as good for landlords, since the company will bring new tenants to their properties.
"These potential tenants will already have been screened by our space services team and their needs identified," he said.
For outside brokers wary the coworking giant's new service will encroach on business and steal clients they bring to WeWork, company spokesman Arif Shah downplayed those concerns.
“It shouldn’t have an impact on brokers bringing us clients,” he told the Commercial Observer.
WeWork recently struck a deal to give brokers at Cushman & Wakefield, JLL and CBRE more sizable commissions. Now brokers at those companies will get a 20% fee on a one-year lease and 5% on expansions and renewals. Previously, WeWork has offered 10% for the first year and 2% for expansions and renewals.
WeWork tapped Jason Bauer, CEO of Voda Bauer Real Estate, and the founder and former CEO of Crumbs Bake Shop, to lead the project.
For its initial launch, the WeWork Space Services pilot will be in New York City. Fano didn't reveal a timetable for its expansion into other markets with a heavy concentration of WeWork Space, such as London or Washington, D.C. Currently, the company has 165 locations in 18 countries.