Can WeWork Save Retail?

According to a recent story from CNN, WeWork, the wildly successful start-up behind those communal work spaces that look like if Instagram were a place, may be venturing into retail – and that could actually be a good thing.

While the company declined to comment to CNN, the story reported that “WeWork is looking to hire at least two senior employees to spearhead a push deeper into retail and e-commerce,” citing two new retail-focused job postings that recently popped up on the WeWork website.

Seeking “a VP to launch a new retail experience” and a “director to develop a merchandise strategy for apparel and other products,” the two jobs ostensibly signal that the one-time desk dealer plans to broaden their services in the near future – something they’ve previously hinted at.

“When it bought the Lord & Taylor building in October,” the story noted, “WeWork CEO Adam Neumann teased plans for ‘re-energizing the traditional retail experience.’”

The details of that plan “remain unclear,” the story says, but it speculates that it “could range from something similar to [a] retail membership model to more WeWork-branded or managed stores.”

If it’s something along the lines of the former, it actually might work. It’s not the worst idea to underwrite a retail experience with WeWork cash. One of the biggest impediments to opening a store is actually opening the store, which is a money pit in all sorts of creative ways.

If WeWork could eliminate some of those obligatory sunk costs, then it could benefit all sorts of upstart retailers.

You can read more about it at CNN.

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  • BortLicensePlatez

    No.WeWork is an insane gentrifier who underpays its staff dramatically while amplifying this horrible banal life without work/life division. Damn them to hell.