WeWork is synonymous with coworking. But the company no longer just leases offices, has microbrews on tap, and rents out the spaces to creatives and entrepreneurs. Cofounder and CEO Adam Neumann has his sights set on bringing the WeWork brand of communalism to the way people live, how they educate their children, and even how they work out. Now, he has a new partner to help him.
Danish starchitect Bjarke Ingels will be WeWork’s first “chief architect”–a role he will juggle while running his architecture firm Bjarke Ingels Group, which is currently working on Google offices in California and London, a prototype Martian settlement in the deserts of Dubai, and a controversial power plant with a ski slope on its roof in Copenhagen.
The announcement comes just a few weeks after WeWork raised $702 million in debt financing–a move some speculate could mean the cash-burning unicorn, valued at more than $20 billion, is readying for an IPO.