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When your valuation is $47 billion you can afford a banker or two.

The unicorn that’s poaching senior bankers ahead of its IPO

Internal recruiters and human resources executives at big investment banks have plenty of competition to keep them up at night, including rival lenders, thriving tech companies and hedge funds. It may be time to add office-sharing juggernaut WeWork to the list. With its initial public offering on the horizon, WeWork is loading up on former bankers. The latest hire is Randy O’Grady, a former senior vice president at Cantor Fitzgerald who joined WeWork as a director of corporate strategic finance in New York earlier this month.

The move comes just a month after Bobby Marcoux, a former executive director at J.P. Morgan, departed to become a senior director of capital markets in WeWork’s New York office. In April, WeWork added former Blackrock and Goldman Sachs MD Tom Osmond as its chief operating officer in human resources. A month previous, the $47 billion startup hired former Goldman Sachs MD Matt Jahansouz as its global head of talent and recruiting. More than five dozen former Goldman Sachs employees or interns are currently employed by WeWork, including the addition of at least four HR-focused staff over the last year alone. Meanwhile, J.P. Morgan alums make up at least another 75 current WeWork employees, with many taking roles in corporate strategy.

The hiring of former bankers makes sense for the quickly-growing company that’s set to go public in the coming months. WeWork is an especially complicated case that has analysts taking sides ahead of one of the biggest IPOs of the year. The unicorn’s revenue more than doubled in 2018, but so did its net annual loss…to $1.94 billion. Having some veteran bankers on staff seems like a good idea. Hopefully they negotiated some last-minute equity.

Have a confidential story, tip, or comment you’d like to share? Contact: btuttle@efinancialcareers.comBear with us if you leave a comment at the bottom of this article: all our comments are moderated by actual human beings. Sometimes these humans might be asleep, or away from their desks, so it may take a while for your comment to appear. Eventually it will – unless it’s offensive or libelous (in which case it won’t).  

AUTHORBeecher Tuttle US Editor

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