The new venture of Adam Neumann seems to be equally exciting as his last one WeWork.
WeWork’s shining rise over the past decade and humiliating fall back in 2019 left a lasting impact on entrepreneurs and investors alike. The startup which rose to success and bagged investors left and right due to its unconventional and charming CEO, Adam Neumann, later saw its downfall due to the controversy surrounding the same person they previously thought of as a revolutionary.
After multiple pushes and pulls, Neumann eventually stepped down after postponing the company’s much-anticipated IPO – which eventually never took off.
Although he had been off the radar for the past few months, the former WeWork CEO is back into the game with fresh investment in a new venture.
GoTo Global: An Oracle for Neumann’s Future?
On Wednesday, reports surfaced about Neumann’s first investment activity since his exit from WeWork in 2019.
The beneficiary of this investment is GoTo Global, an Israeli startup that is a “multimode vehicle sharing service provider.” The concept of GoTo Global is to provide shared travel services to customers, much like the Pool feature in Uber and Ola.
While based in Isreal, the company also operates in Malta, an island in the Meditteranean region. Apart from offering the traditional car-pooling service, it also provides ride-sharing on mopeds. Additionally, customers can also rent bicycles and kick scooters for solitary travel.
All of it can be managed with a single app that GoTo Global users an have on their smartphones.
With Neumann’s investment of $10 million, and additional investments from other stakeholders, such as parent company Shagrir Group Vehicle Services, GoTo Global is set for the next round of growth.
The company’s vision for the near future is to expand the full range of its services to Europe, as well as introduce new vehicles to their ride-sharing options. Its first stop in Europe will be Madrid.
With his investment, Neumann now holds 33% stakes in the company, and is, thus, a major investor. Furthermore, his perks include electing a board member of his choice to represent him in the company.
Yet, GoTo Global, more commonly known as GoTo Mobility, is still an up and coming business and only time will tell whether it succeeds in its vision or not. It provided an approximate 1.3 million trips in 2019 and garnered revenue of $1.3 million. According to company CEO Gil Laser, they were the quickest mobility service provider to start recovering from the repercussions of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Way Forward for Neumann
It remains unclear what Neumann’s plans are regarding his future projects.
Despite being fired from his post as WeWork’s CEO, he has remained in charge of the parent company. Three months ago, however, he filed a breach of contract lawsuit against SoftBank, which was once one of his biggest supporters.
After SoftBank infused WeWork with a massive bailout amount of $9.5 billion at the height of the 2019 debacle, the Japanese conglomerate quickly took over control of the office space sharing venture altogether. However, after promising an additional $3 billion tender offer, SoftBank withdrew the agreement citing the effects of the global outbreak of COVID-19, thereby leading to the aforementioned lawsuit.
The future of WeWork, a once dazzling unicorn, has become uncertain after multiple strokes of bad luck – and bad management. In May, its valuation dropped to $2.9 billion from a reported valuation of $46 billion in August 2019.
Nonetheless, there might still be hope, as it still remains the biggest office space leasing company in the US, after surpassing JP Morgan in 2018.
At the same time, in 2020, SoftBank has reportedly suffered an all-time high in losses in the past 15 years.