WeWork’s Neumanns Still Have Each Other
Former WeWork CEO Adam Neumann and his wife, Rebekah Paltrow Neumann, may not seem like luckboxes at first glance. It wasn’t long ago that they were sitting atop the throne of what was supposed to be the United States’ most valuable tech startup with a $47 billion valuation and plans to go public. But everything changed.
The IPO was withdrawn, and plans were made for massive layoffs ranging from 10% to 25% of WeWork’s workforce. Adam and Rebekah felt the heat from investors and had to abandon their control over the company.
What makes the Neumanns the joint Luckboxes of the Month for November is that, despite the controversy-saturated nature of their leadership—and their eventual departure from WeWork—the Neumanns didn’t leave with their tails tucked between their legs.
Adam remains WeWork’s non-executive chairman, albeit his voting power was drastically reduced (from 10 votes per share to three). His estimated net worth dropped from $4.1 billion to a more modest $600 million, according to Forbes. He got away with smoking weed on the private company jet, regularly downing shots of $140-a-bottle Don Julio 1942 at WeWork locations, walking around the office barefoot and blasting loud music, to list just a few of his hijinks.
Rebekah, who served as chief brand and impact officer, got away with demanding the termination of employees minutes after meeting them if she didn’t like their “energy.”
And they both came away with each other.
It’s a romance not too dissimilar from the one in James Cameron’s Titanic, if only Jack and Rose wound up eating caviar in a cozy, temperature-controlled private yacht—or surfboard, at least—while watching the Titanic sink before their eyes.