Demand for co-working spaces has doubled over the year: WeWork CEO Virwani
Speaking at TechSparks 2023 in Bengaluru, Virwani said India's young demographic is influencing work environments and workplace preferences in the country.
The demand for co-working spaces has doubled over the year, gaining popularity among businesses, said Karan Virwani, CEO ofIndia, at the 14th edition of TechSparks.
Discussing the trends in managed co-working spaces, Virwani said India's young demographic is influencing work environments and workplace preferences in the country.
"The workplace preferences here significantly vary from other regions, where a thriving young demographic is exerting influence on the type of work environments companies desire for their employees."
Commenting on the Indian market for co-working spaces, Virwani said, "India is a stable to unicorns that will become global companies. It's fascinating how India showcases its unique trends in this industry."
WeWork's growth in India
The CEO said, during the early stages of building the company, when funding was abundant, profitability and growth were carefully balanced.
“Our business was supported with our own capital, which allowed us to maintain pace at the global level. However, emphasis was placed on unit economics, which played a crucial role. Products with high value, sought after by many, were the focal point of our attention," said Virwani.
"India is generally a larger market when it comes to big enterprises, and that's also kind of helped us,” he added.
The co-working company recently leased a 54,000-square feet office space in New Delhi, which marked its 50th workspace in the country.
In June, the company secured a lease for 2.2 lakh sq ft of office space in Bengaluru, with plans to establish three centres with a combined capacity of 3,600 desks. WeWork India also acquired over 1 lakh square feet of office space, creating room for 1,500 desks in Hyderabad.
The company had forayed into the national capital in April, taking up a 54,000-sq ft office space from Eldeco.
WeWork's clients include Equinix, Amdocs, 3M,, DocuSign, RIIV India, Mesa School of Business, and Vonage.
Amidst the doubts raised on the company's ability to stay afloat, Virwani had earlier said that the Indian arm of the global coworking firm remains unaffected.
He said, "WeWork India has been backed by the Embassy Group, which holds the majority stake and control to run and operate WeWork Global’s business in India. Any development globally has no impact on our business here."
In October 2019, WeWork Global bagged a funding of $18.5 billion from, which was strikingly more than the GDP of Bolivia. Around $100 million was shared with the Indian entity during the pandemic in June 2020.
In December last year, WeWork India raised Rs 550 crore from BPEA Credit for growth and acquisition opportunities. The company had also launched an ESOP surrender scheme to surrender up to 25% of vested stock options for its long-term employees.
WeWork Labs recently launched the Jumpstart funding programme for early-stage startup—a corpus of $1 million—1.5 million with cheque sizes of $200,000. The programme has received over 800 applications, said Virwani.
Edited by Swetha Kannan