BuzzBuzzHome News has learned that WeWork, a US-based company that currently offers daily and monthly office leases for shared work spaces in the US, Israel, the Netherlands and UK, is opening up a location in Toronto.
Postings for two Toronto-based positions, a community manager and a front desk associate, currently appear on the career section of the company’s website along with employment opportunities in Montreal.
Several real estate industry sources with knowledge of the Toronto expansion said WeWork will be moving into 230-240 Richmond Street West.
The site, purchased by OCAD University in 2010, encompasses two mid-rise buildings, including a red-brick structure boasting 75,000 square feet of office space.
A source from a commercial real estate firm with knowledge of WeWork’s plans says WeWork is looking to secure a 20-year lease for 66,000 square feet of space.
More specifics of WeWork’s tenancy arrangement are not yet known, though BuzzBuzzHome News reached out to both the company and university for comment.
In an email sent yesterday to its community members — read: tenants — WeWork announced that a Montreal location run out of Place Ville Marie would be its first in Canada when it opens in March 2016.
WeWork’s website says the company has grown to more than 40,000 members since co-founders Adam Neumann and Miguel McKelvey established it in 2010 in New York. At WeWork locations, the company handles daily upkeep and provides tenants with office standards such as wifi, unlimited printing and scanning, and coffee.
If WeWork’s Toronto location moves forward as planned, it will enter a market that offers a number of options — including tenancy at shared commercial spaces at the Centre for Social Innovation’s three locations and Foundery — for businesses seeking alternative office arrangements.
However, none have the backing that WeWork does. Recently, the Wall Street Journal reported WeWork had raised $400 million from investors and that Neumann said the company was valued at about $10 billion.
Meanwhile, earlier this year, plans for Crystal City, WeWork’s foray into residential real estate, emerged.
“The Crystal City project will be WeWork’s first residential building, bringing the same benefits of co-working — shared amenities, a sense of community and opportunities for collaboration — to a residential building,” a news release stated.
Along with its plans to expand north of the border as well as into purpose-built rentals, WeWork is also working to set up office space in Mexico City.
BuzzBuzzHome News will update this story as more details become available.