WeWork's latest move into edtech shows no industry is off-limits

by Liz Warren
January 23, 2018
Image via facebook

It’s been a few weeks since WeWork has made headlines.

From massive funding rounds to major acquisitions and everything in between, the company never seems to leave your newsfeed. This time, the coworking giant is making waves with its latest partnership with edtech startup 2U.

As part of the deal, 2U will give WeWork’s 175,000 members and 4,000 employees access to its online learning opportunities. In turn, 2U’s 13,000 students will receive access to WeWork’s coworking spaces and expansive network.

“This partnership is a unique opportunity and will drive innovation and value for both WeWork and 2U,” Chip Paucek, 2U’s CEO and co-founder, said in a statement. “It is an exciting day for 2U and the beginning of a transformational collaboration.”

2U will also offer $5 million in scholarships for WeWork members and employees. Both companies are collaborating on a Future of Learning and Work center, which will be used as a community for lecture series and in-person classes.

The center is scheduled to open in 2019.

This isn’t WeWork’s first collaboration with an education-focused company. Just three months ago, the company acquired The Flatiron School as a way to fulfill its goal of helping people grow — and learn — together. As part of the partnership, WeWork will license Flatiron School’s Learn.co online platform to 2U, enhancing the 2U technology for all of its students.

This partnership is the first major WeWork announcement of 2018. Last year, the coworking space made five acquisitions and announced several rounds of funding, bringing their total amount to $6.9 billion.

“WeWork has always believed that we are better together...this partnership creates incredible opportunities to foster lifelong learning.”

WeWork CEO and co-founder Adam Neumann has said in a statement that he envisions big things to come from the partnership with 2U.

“WeWork has always believed that we are better together, and a large part of that is learning from others through meaningful connections and experiences. 2U has been a leader in making higher education more accessible, and when I met Chip I knew that together we could provide people around the world with a global campus to learn, connect and build community,” Neumann said. “We are all students for life, and this partnership creates incredible opportunities to foster lifelong learning.”

WeWork currently has 238 offices around the world, and 47 specifically in NYC.


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