In July 2018, WeWork was emerging from a multi-billion funding cycle that valued the company at $ 40 billion. As the owner of 10% of the company’s equity, Adam Neumann’s net worth at the time was $ 4 billion (pre-tax, on paper). So what does a freshly minted multi-billionaire do to celebrate his success? He’s buying a ridiculous mansion, of course!
In fact, Adam had already purchased several mansions following previous rounds of funding. At the time of this writing, he owns at least $ 90 million in real estate. He was able to buy these mansions thanks to a personal financial windfall fueled by sales of private shares and debts in the form of personal lines of credit and real estate mortgages. He had a $ 500 million line of credit with JP Morgan alone, backed by his multibillion stake in WeWork.
It was two years ago. And what a crazy two years it has been!
In late 2019, WeWork began circling the drain. Its private valuation has fallen from $ 40 billion to $ 10 billion to potentially as low as $ 2.9 billion. At what point there were very real rumors (backed up by the company’s penchant for burning around $ 233 million in cash every MONTH) that WeWork would not be viable in the first quarter of 2020.
Neumann is currently battling its former backer SoftBank after the Japanese conglomerate backed away from an investment program that would have allowed the former CEO to sell around $ 1 billion of his remaining shares.
At the time of this writing, it’s unclear how Adam is going to satisfy what is presumably millions of dollars in debt that was likely backed by stocks that are now worth zero. Or maybe he has a lot of money on all these private equity sales and will be fine.
Anyway, we wanted to look at one of his homes in particular. As we mentioned, this house was purchased in July 2018. The price paid was $ 21.4 million. The property had been listed for $ 25 million.
What interests me about this house is that it is located across the country in leafy Marin County, California, 15 miles north of San Francisco. It’s quite a distance from WeWork’s head office and other Neumann primary residences. Why did he buy this house? Maybe he bought the house for its unique story.
Designed by renowned architect Sim Van der Ryn, this property was for many years the home of the late music promoter Bill Graham, the mastermind of the live touring device behind bands like The Grateful Dead, Jefferson Starship, Huey Lewis and Janis Joplin.
In the early 2000s, the property was leveled and replaced with one of the greenest private properties in the United States.
The home features a guitar-shaped living room, 13,600 square feet of living space, seven bedrooms, a swimming pool (with water slide), spa, and orchard.
Watch this video tour. It is very impressive:
Earlier today, it was confirmed that Adam had quietly listed the house for sale for $ 27.5 million.
It is not known if Adam even set foot in the house. For much of the time he owned it, he was embroiled in controversy after controversy. I don’t know when he would have had time for a relaxing vacation in the Bay Area suburbs.