There have been more than enough quick takes and drawdowns about what has happened at the “Adam fucked it up” company called We. In the past, I have written a few different articles of my own about what I thought they were at the time and might be in the future.
If you have read any of those articles, for the most part, I was more than positive about what the WeFuckedUp Company was doing and expounded upon the many ways they would possibly change the #CRE World possibly forever.
What I did not write about as much as I should have was the personalities driving the company. To say that I interact with multiple startups and their founders daily is indeed an understatement. It’s not a reach at all to also say my “job” is to find the ones that are that special breed of human who can and will make it to the all-important liquidity event in whatever form that may be. Is this enough to quantify some sort of opinion about the what or why the WeFuckedUp Company is in the state that it’s in? Maybe not but then again that has never stopped me in the past so, here we go.
The obvious reason and or reasons for the WeFuckedUp debacle is are or were the founders of and the board that supposedly “governed” them. It may go down as one of the all-time business use cases for how to completely do it all wrong and fuck up what looked to be a sure thing. If you have read some of the parts and pieces of what went on and followed it in any way it was not hard to spot.
I’m not sure when this happened but back a couple of years ago WeWork announced that they had invested $13 million in a wave-making company so that The We people could “embody the spirit of the wave.” If you read this now and know what we all know it’s just beyond absurd. I do remember at the time writing something to the effect that this was exactly how to tell your board to fire you. Beyond what most normal people would call basic due diligence the list of things that should have raised all kinds of red flags looks to have simply been ignored.
There are reasons many companies have policies that do not allow any type of nepotism. It’s because it does not work. There are also reasons the CEO and that same family should not use the corporate account as a way to buy personal assets. Although in this specific case not only was it allowed it seems to have been encouraged and used as a strategy with press releases glorifying it all. And you must sit back and wonder how it could be so easy to do just that.
Let me give you a bit of insight. Even if you are on the board your job is to do what? Make the investor’s money. There are many ways to get there. Also, it’s your job to “manage” the asset. For the most part that has nothing to do with the founders. And you say “wait, that’s bullshit, that’s exactly what you are supposed to do.” I agree with you but there are always certain unique parameters and legal pieces to every situation that may either allow or prevent just that. Does that justify the behavior? If I were you I would watch the next few weeks and see how many of those same people bail as fast as they can to do what? Save Their Own Ass! It’s all pretty when the $$$ is flowing in and when it’s not??
This brings me to the point of this article in the first place and that is what we see now with The WeFuckedUp Company has happened before and will happen again and again and again.
PURE GREED AND HUBRIS.
I could go on and on and on but let me give you some context why I am 100% sure I am now and will be right about this forever.
Any of you remember back a few years ago and the Excligent meltdown?
How hard was it to see then, and how hard is it to see now.
Wait, what, that can’t possibly be mentioned in the same breath, can it?
Hell yes, it can and that’s how I do it, years later and still piling on!
+1 Anyone know where Doug is today?
+1+1 Give Adam credit he got fucking PAID!
*How do you think the employees of both companies feel today?