WeWork CEO steps down as startup delays plans to go public

Turmoil of late shows that not all tech IPO dreams come true... at least as planned.

Corinne Reichert Senior Editor
Corinne Reichert (she/her) grew up in Sydney, Australia and moved to California in 2019. She holds degrees in law and communications, and currently writes news, analysis and features for CNET across the topics of electric vehicles, broadband networks, mobile devices, big tech, artificial intelligence, home technology and entertainment. In her spare time, she watches soccer games and F1 races, and goes to Disneyland as often as possible.
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Corinne Reichert

Outside a WeWork office in Manhattan

Alfred Ng / CNET

WeWork co-founder Adam Neumann has stepped down as CEO effective immediately, the company announced Tuesday. WeWork, which provides shared workspaces for tech startups, will now be led by co-CEOs Artie Minson, the former chief financial officer, and Sebastian Gunningham, former vice chairman.

After WeWork reportedly postponed its IPO last Tuesday, the new CEOs said they're now "evaluating the optimal timing for an IPO."

"Our core business is strong and we will be taking clear actions to balance WeWork's high growth, profitability and unique member experience," Minson and Gunningham said Tuesday in a press release.

Watch this: Stop using WeWork's Wi-Fi without protection

Neumann said WeWork, which now operates across 29 countries and has 527,000 daily members, "has never been stronger." He's stepping down because of the recent scrutiny of his leadership over the past few weeks, he said, which has been "a significant distraction."

WeWork came under fire last week for having unsecured Wi-Fi networks, which meant companies' devices, financial records, business transactions, client databases and emails were visible on the building's network for years. This was despite WeWork knowing about the issue from as far back as May 2015.

WeWork didn't immediately respond to a request for further comment.