WeWork is rounding up advisers for help with restructuring as it struggles with a heavy debt load and poor financial performance, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

The co-working giant has hired real estate adviser Hilco Global, once again tapped consultant Alvarez & Marsal, and re-engaged law firm Kirkland & Ellis for advice on its options, according to the people, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the matter is private. The company is seeking to avoid a Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing and restructure its debts out of court, one of the people said.

We Work Explainer

A sign for WeWork is displayed at the workspace-sharing office in the borough of Manhattan in New York on Aug. 9. Ted Shaffrey/Associated Press file

WeWork’s ability to stave off bankruptcy will depend in large part on whether it can terminate or renegotiate a substantial number of its leases in more expensive markets, the people said. The company earlier this month told investors there is “substantial doubt” about its ability to stay in business.

“We will continue to invest in our product offerings while simultaneously taking necessary steps to reduce rent and tenancy costs. Our members remain our priority and, regardless of any near-term actions we may take, we will continue to operate and serve them for the long term,” a representative for WeWork said in a statement.

Representatives for Hilco, Alvarez, and Kirkland didn’t respond to requests for comment.

A few years ago, WeWork was one of America’s most valuable start-ups. Co-founder Adam Neumann aspired to remake the way people work, and the company’s mission statement included the imperative to “elevate the world’s consciousness.” Neumann also sought to build a communal living business, WeLive, and an education business, WeGrow. The company raised billions of dollars and signed longer-term leases on buildings around the world, planning to profit from leasing the space to clients short term.


But WeWork’s disastrous effort in going public in 2019 resulted in Neumann’s ouster as chief executive officer. The company ultimately went public in 2021 through combining with a special purpose acquisition company. Its shares have plunged 97% in the last year, and its debt has fallen to deeply distressed levels, just months after it reached a sweeping debt-cutting deal with some of its creditors.

The company has continued to struggle as many people have persisted in working from home after the pandemic, cutting into demand for office space. More than a third of desks in offices globally are unoccupied all week, a report said this week. WeWork is focusing over the next year on cutting rental costs, negotiating more favorable leases, boosting revenue, and raising money, it said in a statement earlier this month.

Earlier this month, WeWork added four restructuring specialists – Paul Aronzon, Paul Keglevic, Elizabeth LaPuma, and Henry Miller – to its board.

Bloomberg’s Rachel Butt and Jeremy Hill contributed to this report.

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