Daily Digest News – March 19, 2021

Hand selected flexible workspace news from the most reliable sources to keep you ahead of the pack. We find all the latest news, so you don’t have to. Morning and afternoon updates. Stay in the know.

Here’s what you need to know today:

Newmark’s Acquisition Of Knotel Is Approved

Newmark’s acquisition of flexible office operator Knotel was approved by a Delaware bankruptcy court this week. Now, the brokerage firm is anticipating the sale to happen shortly.

Knotel filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in January after facing numerous lawsuits over missed rent and two rounds of layoffs during the pandemic.

“Flexible workspace has been one of the fastest-growing areas of commercial real estate, and we expect this adaptive model will play an important role in the future of our industry,” said Barry Gosin, CEO of Newmark. “As a global commercial real estate leader, Newmark believes that our nimble integrated platform, combined with Knotel’s capabilities, will provide superior management and consulting services to corporations and owners around the world. We look forward to completing our purchase of Knotel and welcoming so many of their talented professionals to Newmark.”

Newmark provided around $20 million in financing to Knotel, and also made a $70 million stalking-horse bid to acquire the company.

The brokerage said it would offer specifics on the financials for the acquisition during its first-quarter earnings call.

It is still unclear how many Knotel locations will continue to operate moving forward. However, Newmark has stated it will employ most of the 106 Knotel employees in New York City.

Credit: Knotel

What To Expect From The Future Of Remote Working

According to a survey from Upwork, nearly 27% of Americans will be working remotely this year, a jump from the 7% who worked remotely in 2018.

This guarantees that remote working and other flexible work arrangements will continue to play a role in how businesses large and small operate. 

Even major companies like Twitter and Dropbox have committed to more permanent work-from-home policies in the future, indicating that remote work trends will continue to evolve this year.

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For starters, as some employees express the desire to continue to work from home and others are eager to come into the office, hybrid models will become a mainstay. 

By adopting this type of arrangement, companies can accommodate all work styles and keep employees satisfied.

Over the past year, business leaders have used meeting room budgets towards conferencing technology to support the increased need for virtual meetings. In this effort to replace the lack of human interaction, productivity has taken a hit. Moving forward, we can expect that companies will cut down on conference calls to allow more time for actual work.

One of the biggest challenges of remote working arrangements has been the inability to switch off at the end of the day. In fact, a survey from Kentik revealed that 51% of employees were concerned about their work-life balance. That is why it is up to employers to encourage their staff to create boundaries for themselves and teach them how to completely turn off after their work hours.

Credit: Bigstock

Washington D.C. Coworking Startup Raises $2.5 Million

Coworking startup WorkChew Inc. has raised $2.5 million in seed funding that will be put towards new hires, product development and marketing.

The company, which helps transform hospitality centers into coworking spaces during slow hours, hopes to hire six more people to its three-person team this year.

WorkChew provides remote employees a place to work, while also helping hospitality companies bring in a new revenue stream.

Maisha Burt, cofounder and CEO of WorkChew, also hopes to expand across the U.S. Currently, the company provides its services Chicago, Philadelphia and Washington D.C. The company is aiming to expand to Atlanta, Boston, Dallas, Denver, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, San Francisco and Seattle this year.

“The pandemic pushed many organizations to become fully remote, and the experience has been better than many imagined,” Burt said in an email. “As a result, a hybrid working model that embraces the best of both remote and office-based work awaits many workers and companies on the other side of the crisis. WorkChew is well-positioned to enable efficient, inclusive in-person engagement to help organizations maintain corporate culture and ensure workforce productivity.”

The funding round was led by Harlem Capital, with Wilshire Lane Partners, Invictus Advisory Group, Techstars Ventures and RW Capital Investments also participating.

Credit: WorkChew
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