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WeWork shifts focus from small to medium-size businesses

1 year ago by James Mattone in Innovation, Markets

WeWork*** ($WEWORK), the unicorn startup that has redefined the coworking industry, is looking to expand its "HQ" service that caters towards medium-sized businesses — which it says is 11 to 250 employees by definition of its HQ service — in order to grab a bigger share of the office-space market.

WeWork made its name in the space for its "HotDesk" and small office spaces, where small businesses 10 people or less could rent out a coworking space to build up their business growing into a bigger company (and to bigger space). Now, WeWork wants to not only be there for when a new company plants its seed, but when it wraps up Series A, B, and C funding rounds and is in its teenage years of becoming a household name.

But to be clear, renting out spaces to medium-size businesses isn't a new venture for WeWork. The company already operates hundreds of offices that can comfortably fit a team of 11-250, but it is looking to expand in this area in order to compete with the likes of Industrious ($INDUSTRIOUSOFFICE).

On December 4, WeWork listed 375 out of 402 individual offices that could accommodate a team of 11-99 employees (it did not list offices that could accomidate 100-250 employees) on its website.

These offices were in 65 specific cities, which were then broken down into 106 districts according to how WeWork classifies office location. Out of all of these cities, New York City has the most individual real estate pieces with at least one medium-sized office space, while London has the most listings for office spaces (i.e. physical listings within its real estate portfolio).

City Number of Med. Business Offices (Dec. 4)
Percentage of Total Real Estate for Med. Business Offices
New York City 52 13.87%
London 34 9.07%
SF Bay Area 18 4.80%
Shanghai 18 4.80%
Los Angeles 16 4.27%
Seoul 12 3.20%
Mexico City 11 2.93%
Washington, D.C. 11 2.93%
Mumbai 10 2.67%
Beijing 9 2.40%
Boston 9 2.40%

WeWork City Number of Individual Med. Business Office Listings
Percentage of Total Listings
London 496 11.39%
New York City 467 10.73%
SF Bay Area 218 5.01%
Shanghai 191 4.39%
Mumbai 162 3.72%
Seoul 162 3.72%
Los Angeles 161 3.70%
Mexico City 150 3.45%
Boston 115 2.64%
Bengaluru 108 2.48%

London is also one of the places WeWork said it would specifically target with its HQ expansion. Other places that it named were Shanghai (tied for 3rd on the real estate list, 4th in individual locations), Boston (9th on both lists), and Denver (24th in real estate, 22nd in listings).

While the other overseas and domestic targets it has aren't listed, an overall expansion of its medium business offerings will help WeWork compete in the war to become the biggest coworking company in the world against old titans and younger upstarts.

*** WeWork is a subsidiary of the newly-named The We Company, but for the purpose of this article and to limit confusion, we only used "WeWork."

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James Mattone

James is the Associate Editor at Thinknum Media, mainly covering video games, food, and tech news, but not afraid to head into Sephora or beauty brands if need be...

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