In WeWork's major pre-IPO meltdown, a few of the company's side businesses were bound to hit the chopping block. It was announced Friday that WeGrow, the experimental education pet project of ousted WeWork founder Adam Neumann's wife, won't survive.
As The Huffington Post first reported, WeWork told parents with kids enrolled at its elite, yoga-obsessed Manhattan private school, that its doors will close at the end of the school year.
"WeWork will continue to operate WeGrow through the remainder of the 2019-2020 school year, providing a quality education and classroom experience for all students,” a WeWork representative said in a statement. “As part of the company’s efforts to focus on its core business, WeWork has informed the families of WeGrow students that we will not operate WeGrow after this school year.”
The school enrolled around 100 students as of 2019; many of them were reportedly the children of employees or on scholarship. It was the brainchild of Rebekah Neumann, who also served as WeGrow’s CEO among her other roles at WeWork and who left the company amid her husband’s ouster.
Adam Neumann and his close associates were pushed out in a leadership purge initiated by Softbank, the Japanese mega-corporation which invested in WeWork as one bet out of its $100 billion pool of venture capital for fast-growing tech companies.
As The Daily Beast previously reported, WeWork’s instability made it a risky choice for New Yorkers willing to spend piles of cash on an alternative education.
“Be wary of sending your kid to a school run by a company that’s in financial trouble," one consultant said. "Did Lehman Brothers ever have a school? Enron?”