WeWork said Wednesday it has formed a joint venture with SoftBank Latin America Fund to grow its business in Latin America.
The joint venture agreement provides SoftBank Latin America Fund, the largest venture fund in Latin America, exclusive right to operate the WeWork brand in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia and Mexico.
”The partnership demonstrates WeWork’s continued progress toward optimizing its international markets with local expertise,” said WeWork in a statement.
“Our joint venture with SoftBank Latin America Fund is the latest example of WeWork’s continued progress toward optimizing our international markets with local capital and operating expertise. The localized model has already proven very successful in our China, India, and Japan markets where we have seen consistent, positive growth through partnerships with regional affiliates,” said said Sandeep Mathrani, CEO of WeWork.
”As Latin America will continue to be an important market for WeWork, we have found the right partner in Softbank Latin America Fund to successfully move our business forward,” he added.
“SoftBank is the perfect partner for WeWork given our understanding of the global and local landscape, our expanding ecosystem of investments in the region, and our deep familiarity with WeWork’s business model. As part of our process to select exceptional companies for our SoftBank Latin America portfolio, we saw great potential to leverage both our capital and operating expertise, pulling together a compelling offer for this joint venture. Flexible space is a global megatrend with great growth potential in Latin America, and we look forward to scaling the offer in the region,” said Marcelo Claure, WeWork Chairman and SoftBank Group International CEO.
The joint venture will be led by Claudia Woods, who is joining the SoftBank Latin America Fund from her prior role as CEO of Uber in Brazil. Claudia also sits on the Board of AmBev and Oi and was recently named by Forbes as one of the 20 most powerful women in Brazil.
Claudio Hidalgo, the existing Head of WeWork Latin America, will serve as Chief Operating Officer. Michel Combes, President of SoftBank Group International, will serve as chairman of the board.
In Latin America, WeWork opened its first building in Mexico City in 2016. Five years later, WeWork has expanded its reach in the region to more than 90 buildings across 18 cities, providing flexible and innovative space solutions to more than 60,000 members.
Launched in 2019, the $5B SoftBank Latin America Fund is the largest technology fund focused exclusively on the fast-growing Latin American market.
”The SoftBank Latin America Fund’s deep understanding of the local landscape, expanding network, and operating expertise differentiated the company as the ideal partner to grow WeWork’s business in Latin America after a competitive review by WeWork for the right to operate the brand in the region,” said in a statement.