WeWork founder Adam Neumann secures $350 million for new housing startup

·2 min read
SHANGHAI, CHINA - APRIL 12: Adam Neumann, co-founder and chief executive officer of WeWork, speaks during a signing ceremony at WeWork Weihai Road flagship on April 12, 2018 in Shanghai, China. World's leading co-working space company WeWork will acquire China-based rival naked Hub for 400 million U.S. dollars. (Photo by Jackal Pan/Visual China Group via Getty Images)
Adam Neumann, who founded WeWork, is back in the real estate business with a rental properties startup and a $350-million check from the venture firm Andreessen Horowitz. (Visual China Group via Getty Images)

For Adam Neumann’s next venture after his rise and fall at WeWork, the venture capital powerhouse Andreessen Horowitz pledged a big financial commitment.

The venture capital firm's investment in Flow, a residential real estate company led by Neumann, is roughly $350 million, said a person familiar with the deal who asked not to be identified because the information is private. The investment will be the largest check written for a single round of backing in the fund’s history, according to the New York Times, which first reported on the deal.

Details on Flow are scant, but the company seeks to address the U.S. housing crisis, in part by offering community-centric services in apartment properties. Already, Neumann has purchased thousands of residential units in Atlanta; Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; Miami; and Nashville, where he plans to operate as landlord.

The housing company is unaffiliated with Flowcarbon, another startup Neumann helped start, which specializes in selling carbon credits on a blockchain, said a person familiar with the matter.

The partnership between Andreessen Horowitz and Neumann is noteworthy for several reasons. It’s a validation for the controversial WeWork co-founder. And Marc Andreessen, who co-founded the venture capital firm and wrote a blog post Monday in support of Neumann’s venture, openly objected to a housing development proposal in his home city of Atherton, Calif., this month.

“We understand how difficult it is to build something like this, and we love seeing repeat-founders build on past successes by growing from lessons learned,” Andreessen wrote in the blog post. “For Adam, the successes and lessons are plenty, and we are excited to go on this journey with him and his colleagues building the future of living.”

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.