"One top San Francisco broker put it this way, 'WeWork’s openly been saying for years that if the market tanks, it’ll renegotiate every lease it has.'"
It may be that WeWork will shiv its landlords only when it becomes truly desperate, but with $18 billion in short and medium-term debt and losses running nearly a billion a year, desperation may arrive sooner than anticipated. This, by the way, is where WeWork’s pivot to the Fortune 500 is going to bite harder than a third grader in a schoolyard fight. Sublease 100,000 feet to 400 dinky entrepreneurs and start-ups and chances are some will prove to be cockroaches that survive the next downturn—the space may stay half-leased. Sublease that same 100,000 feet to General Motors or Microsoft, companies with better—and more conservative—economic forecasting models than you’ve ever dreamed of, and they will go dark before your feet hit the floor.