Mark Dixon, CEO of the world’s largest shared office operator IWG, is reportedly in talks with investment banks to create a standalone business that could become a publicly traded rival to WeWork.
Dixon, who founded IWG as Regus Group in 1989, currently holds a stake of over 25% in the company and hopes to use its franchising model to expand the company.
This would be a huge step for the company, as Regus was forced to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in 2003. Currently, the company’s market capitalization in London is £3.64 billion. Dixon believes that the company’s U.S. business could be worth £3 billion as a standalone franchise.
Reports say that IWG will only partner with bankers who have not played a role in WeWork investments. The listing would likely come soon after WeWork’s IPO that is expected to take place next month.
Just this year, the company sold its Japanese and Taiwan operations to TKP for £320 million and £23 million, respectively.
“We think that is what will appeal to shareholders,” said Dixon. “You have basically licensing and services revenue, which will grow more rapidly as we franchise.”