Eliot Brown, along with Maureen Farrell, is author of “The Cult of We: WeWork, Adam Neumann, and the Great Startup Delusion”. As a reporter for the Wall Street Journal he became intrigued by the messianic founder who had raised billions of dollars, and developed a cult-like following at his startup WeWork.
“In little more than a decade, Neumann transformed himself from a struggling baby clothes salesman into the charismatic, hard-partying CEO of a company worth $47 billion – on paper. With his long hair and feel-good mantras, the six-foot-five Israeli transplant looked the part of a messianic truth teller. Investors swooned, and billions poured in.
Soon, however, WeWork was burning through cash faster than Neumann could bring it in. From his private jet, sometimes clouded with marijuana smoke, he scoured the globe for more capital. Then, as WeWork readied a Hail Mary IPO, it all fell apart. Nearly $40 billion of value vaporized in one of corporate America’s most spectacular meltdowns.”
In this episode Eliot Brown shares what he learned studying WeWork and it’s larger-than-life founder.