The company that once embodied the future of the workplace, which at its peak was valued at $47 billion, is reportedly considering filing a chapter 11 petition in New Jersey.

The verdict is in — the old way of doing business is over. Join us at Inman Connect New York Jan. 23-25, when together we’ll conquer today’s market challenges and prepare for tomorrow’s opportunities. Defy the market and bet big on your future.

WeWork, the commercial real estate firm that became synonymous with flexible co-working spaces, plans to file for bankruptcy as soon as next week, The Wall Street Journal reported on Tuesday.

The company that once embodied the future of the workplace, and which was valued at $47 billion during its prime under founder and original CEO Adam Neumann, is considering filing a chapter 11 petition in New Jersey, The WSJ’s sources familiar with the matter said.

The company’s struggles over the last few years have been no secret, but the direness of the situation seemed to become more plainly apparent after WeWork itself admitted in a financial filing in August that there was “substantial doubt” the company could survive much longer.

In September, the embattled company said it would attempt to renegotiate “nearly all” of its leases in a conference call with landlords in an attempt to seek out less expensive rents. Then earlier this month, credit rating provider Fitch Ratings downgraded the commercial firm’s rating from a CC, which means default seems probable, to a C, indicating that a “default-like” process is now underway.

On Oct. 2, WeWork missed interest payments that were owed to bondholders, which placed the company on a 30-day grace period in which to make those payments. If the firm did not make the payments, it would be considered an event of default. As of Tuesday, WeWork said it had made an agreement with bondholders to give the company an additional seven days to negotiate with stakeholders before going into default.

A spokesperson for WeWork declined to comment to The WSJ on the company’s potential bankruptcy filing, other than to say such claims were “speculation.” The spokesperson also added in regards to a securities filing from Tuesday that “the forbearance agreement provides time to continue in the positive conversations with our key financial stakeholders and engage with them to implement our ongoing strategic efforts to enhance our capital structure.”

In August, the company saw some significant board changes after three directors resigned over a disagreement in regards to board governance and the company’s strategic direction, a securities filing shows. Following those resignations, WeWork named four new directors who specialize in complex financial restructurings. Over the last several months, those directors have been negotiating with WeWork’s creditors over a restructuring plan in preparation for bankruptcy.

Amidst WeWork’s growing financial woes, the company still has a vast portfolio of locations across the globe. As of June, WeWork had 777 locations across 39 countries, with 229 of those locations based in the U.S., according to securities filings. The firm has an estimated $10 billion in lease obligations coming due starting in the second half of 2023 through the end of 2027, plus $15 billion starting in 2028, according to filings.

Securities filings show the company also spent $530 million during the first six months of 2023 and had about $205 million in cash as of June.

WeWork built its reputation on a flashy model that saw investors putting their money in what they saw as futuristic workspaces with sleek designs and perks, like beer and kombucha, to build community among workers while eschewing the traditional office. The money WeWork poured into locations and expansion was never quite recovered, however, as fewer individuals and companies opted to make use of their spaces, a problem that became exacerbated in the wake of the pandemic when working from home became ubiquitous.

Email Lillian Dickerson

Show Comments Hide Comments
Sign up for Inman’s Morning Headlines
What you need to know to start your day with all the latest industry developments
By submitting your email address, you agree to receive marketing emails from Inman.
Thank you for subscribing to Morning Headlines.
Back to top
Only 3 days left to register for Inman Connect Las Vegas before prices go up! Don't miss the premier event for real estate pros.Register Now ×
Limited Time Offer: Get 1 year of Inman Select for $199SUBSCRIBE×
Log in
If you created your account with Google or Facebook
Don't have an account?
Forgot your password?
No Problem

Simply enter the email address you used to create your account and click "Reset Password". You will receive additional instructions via email.

Forgot your username? If so please contact customer support at (510) 658-9252

Password Reset Confirmation

Password Reset Instructions have been sent to

Subscribe to The Weekender
Get the week's leading headlines delivered straight to your inbox.
Top headlines from around the real estate industry. Breaking news as it happens.
15 stories covering tech, special reports, video and opinion.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
It looks like you’re already a Select Member!
To subscribe to exclusive newsletters, visit your email preferences in the account settings.
Up-to-the-minute news and interviews in your inbox, ticket discounts for Inman events and more
1-Step CheckoutPay with a credit card
By continuing, you agree to Inman’s Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

You will be charged . Your subscription will automatically renew for on . For more details on our payment terms and how to cancel, click here.

Interested in a group subscription?
Finish setting up your subscription