Adam Neumann, left, and his wife, Rebekah Neumann.
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WeWork cofounder and former CEO Adam Neumann made his comeback in the startup world this year, and received a $350 million investment from tech venture capital firm Andreessen Horowitz, which is the firm’s largest single investment ever.
Neumann was once worth as much as $14 billion, but saw his fortune dwindle after WeWork’s failed IPO and his subsequent resignation from the company. Bloomberg estimated his net worth at $450 million in 2020. Forbes pegged it a bit higher, at $750 million.
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One of the first businesses Neumann started was Krawlers, which sold baby clothes with knee pads.
“At the time, I was misguided and putting my energy into all the wrong places,” Neumann told Business Insider in 2016.
After Neumann met his wife Rebekah, they lived in an East Village studio, an “apartment smaller than this office,” Neumann told Business Insider.
Nine years later, WeWork grew to a $47 billion valuation. The company was under the We Company umbrella, which also includes a co-living venture, WeLive, and the “conscious entrepreneurial school” WeGrow, which announced it would close in fall 2019 at the end of the academic year. In 2020, Forbes reported that Rebekah bought back the rights to WeGrow’s curriculum and had plans to relaunch the school.
After WeWork filed to go public in 2019, the company faced intense scrutiny by investors and the media. There were concerns about WeWork’s path to profitability and the behavior of its leader, Neumann.
WeWork ended up delaying its IPO on September 16, and Neumann stepped down as CEO on September 24.
In 2021, WeWork went public, after merging with BowX Acquisition Corp.
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Their purchases included multiple homes in the New York City area, one in the Hamptons, and a $21 million house in the San Francisco Bay Area that features a guitar-shaped room, according to The Wall Street Journal.
In February 2020, Neumann sold the Water Mill farmhouse for $1.25 million — less than what he paid for it — to a limited liability company, Mansion Global reported. The sale was an off-market transaction, meaning the home was never publicly listed.
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The Linden Farm estate in Pound Ridge spans 60 acres.
At the time of purchase, the property included a more than 13,700-square-foot, eight-bedroom, eight-bathroom house; a horse stable and ring for riding; a tennis court; a waterfall and pool; and nearly 4,500 acres of preserved land nearby. The estate was listed for $22 million.
Neumann bought four units in a Gramercy Park townhouse for a total of $34.7 million back in 2017, per The Real Deal. His purchases included two first-floor units for $7.2 million, a fifth-floor unit for $9.5 million, and a duplex penthouse for $18 million.
The 11-acre property in Corte Madera, California, has seven bedrooms, a pool and water slide, a spa, a home theater, a racquetball court, and organic gardens, per an old Zillow listing. One of the rooms is shaped like a guitar, earning the house the nickname the “Guitar House.”
The property also includes a two-bedroom guest house.
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In an interview with the Financial Times, Neumann said he’s invested in 49 companies through his family fund.
On behalf of WeWork, Neuman invested in wave-pool startup WaveGarden and the big-wave surfer Laird Hamilton’s superfood startup, which sells things like “performance mushrooms,” powdered coconut water infused with beets and turmeric, and highly caffeinated coffee.
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The sources declined to name specific recipients of Neumann’s reported charitable giving.
$970 million of that was to go toward buying back shares from Neumann, but Softbank’s withdrawal from the deal has left the former CEO with a larger portion of WeWork shares that are probably worth much less than SoftBank has planned to offer, according to Bloomberg.
In an interview with Andrew Ross Sorkin in 2021, Neumann said actually left the company with $180 million from Softbank.