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Adam Neumann Is Trying a Comeback

Adam Neumann

Adam Neumann (twitter)

Adam Neumann, the disgraced – some might say unstable – founder of WeWork who was forced out of his own company, is now working with venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz. Recently, Andreessen Horowitz released an hour-long interview in which Neumann speaks about real estate. The video, taken at a company conference last November, might be Adam Neumann’s attempt at making a comeback to the status of business icon enjoyed by entrepreneurs like Elon Musk and Bill Gates.

Last summer it was revealed that Andreessen Horowitz is an investor in Adam Neumann’s new real estate startup Flow. According to a report in the New York Times, the firm is investing $350 million in Flow. This will give the startup a $1 billion valuation right out of the gate.

Flow sounds a lot like WeWork. The new startup boasts that it plans to “revolutionize” the residential rental real estate market. It will apparently do so using the many properties that Adam Neumann acquired in recent years.

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In the video Adam Neumann spoke about a housing crisis in America saying, “The housing crisis is one of the biggest crises the country is in. But the reason it’s really difficult to solve it is because the solution is between five years to a decade in the future. I think we have the right team to try.”

Marc Andreessen, a cofounder and general partner at Andreessen Horowitz, said in the same video, “There is an established system with political powers of local homeowners. The system almost seems deterministic.”

“Local homeowners, no matter what their political background, prevent the construction of new houses. It’s a real trap,” he added. “It’s very challenging to reimagine cities when they’re already built,” said Neumann, “we can imagine what’s happening inside.”

What many might feel is amazing here is that Adam Neumann is getting a second chance.

In 2019, Neumann was forced out of WeWork, the company which he founded in 2010. After a meteoric rise, the entrepreneur was brought down after allegations of serious drug use and sexual improprieties were made. WeWork was forced to deal with sexual harassment suits. It delayed its planned IPO and laid off many workers.

But Adam Neumann reportedly walked away with a $1.7 billion deal. And so he used this money to acquire real estate and invest in a few new ventures.

But if you have read or seen anything about Adam Neumann, then you know that while he might be a narcissist, he is nothing if not really good at being a salesman, at making the pitch and convincing people that he is right.

But Andreessen Horowitz is as serious and as important of a financial firm as they come, so it must see something in Flow that makes it a worthwhile investment.



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