How will WeWork’s IPO botch impact its India business? Well, the apparently tentative answer is ‘next to nothing.’ Else, why would its India business (owned by realty firm Embassy Group) plan to raise $200 Mn; when its parent company is currently busy in streamlining its global business in the aftermath of the IPO fiasco.
“There is lot of speculation about WeWork India business. We still believe in WeWork brand. India business is really growing well. Embassy Group is bullish about the co-working sector and we continue to expand,” WeWork India CEO Karan Virwani told PTI in an interview.
WeWork India plans to raise the reported $200 Mn from domestic as well as international investors by the year end. Virwani did not disclose the names of the investors that it plans to engage or has already engaged in talks with.
However, he did disclose that the substantial part of the funds raised will be used to expand in newer markets like Noida and Hyderabad. He further added that the company plans to add one lakh seats by the end of next year.
Virwani also claimed that WeWork India is already profitable at the center level and will become profitable at the entity level over the next one year or so.
Speculations have been rife in India whether WeWork India will have to bear the brunt after its parent company indefinitely deferred its IPO in the U.S market. The ouster of the CEO Adam Neumann only further added to these speculations.
Reports are also rife in the media circles that the U.S. co-working giant may cut down 25% of its global workforce. Although Virwani claims that all is really well in India business, there is every likelihood that there will be some layoffs back in India.
WeWork currently operates 26 centers and 46000 seats in cities like Bengaluru, Mumbai, Pune and Gurugram. The co-working giants’ India unit faces competition from well funded competitors like Awfis, 91 Springboard, Regus and innov8.