Coworking operators have started waiving membership fees and offering discounts on rent as many businesses are on lockdown due to COVID-19 for the time being.
This has helped some firms keep clients, especially struggling startups, from leaving behind their memberships all together.
For instance, WeWork’s franchise arm WeWork India has told clients they only need to pay 30% of rent for the period of the lockdown.
Some companies have said that they are able to invoke the force majeure, or ‘Act of God,’ clause in their agreements that allows them to not fulfill a responsibility in the case of unpredictable circumstances. Anand Vemuri, CEO of 91springboard, said that the company will not contest against force majeure and the company is reportedly working on cutting or waiving rental fees for members.
A GoWork executive stated that many clients have asked for a rent waiver, but did not indicate how the company would respond just yet. He did state that if clients do renew contracts, it will be for a fewer number of seats.
The coronavirus pandemic has left coworking providers with much more to prove as they are put to the ultimate test.