Coworking company WeWork has named Indian-American real estate veteran Sandeep Mathrani as the new Chief Executive Officer of the company. Mathrani, who most recently served as CEO of Brookfield Properties' retail group, will join in his new role from February 18. He will also be a member of the company's Board of Directors.
Mathrani will report to Marcelo Claure, who will remain the Executive Chairman, WeWork said, adding that Mathrani's deep real estate experience and skills are complementary with those of Claure. Mathrani succeeds co-CEOs Artie Minson and Sebastian Gunningham. Minson and Gunningham will remain with the company through a transition period to ensure a smooth onboarding process.
On his appointment, Sandeep Mathrani stated, “I am honored to be joining WeWork at this pivotal time in its history. The company has redefined how people and companies approach work with an innovative platform, exceptionally talented team and significant potential if we stick to our shared values and maintain our members-first focus. I am grateful for the confidence Marcelo and the board has placed in me and look forward to partnering with Marcelo and the very talented employees at WeWork.”
Mathrani's appointment comes at a crucial time when WeWork is trying to stabilize its business following a tumultuous last year wherein it failed to go public last year and the departure of its co-founder and former CEO Adam Neumann.
This was followed by a dramatic fall in its valuation, with Japan-based technology investor SoftBank taking an 80 percent ownership of the company and infusing into it $5 Bn in new financing. The company also slashed close to 4,000 jobs later.
Prior to serving as CEO of Brookfield Properties' retail group, Mathrani held the position of CEO of General Growth Properties (GGP Inc.) for eight years. Before that, Mathrani was President of Retail for Vornado Realty Trust, where he oversaw the firm's US retail real estate division and operations in India. Before that, he has also spent nearly a decade as Executive Vice President at Forest City Ratner, where he was responsible for starting and growing a new platform of retail properties across the five boroughs of New York City.
With WeWork hoping to achieve profitability on an adjusted EBITDA basis by 2021 and positive free cash flow in 2022, Mathrani has his task cut out for him.