New Unicorn Knotel to Use $400 Million Raise for Expansion, Says Founder

Edward Shenderovich, co-founder and executive chairman of Knotel
August 23, 2019

Flexible workspace company Knotel announced this week that it has raised another $400 million, bringing its valuation up to the $1 billion unicorn status.

With the funding led by Wafra, part of Kuwait's Sovereign Wealth Fund, the company plans on continuing its aggressive expansion.

"We're in 15 cities and we'll just go deeper into those cities. We will also expand to 15 - 20 more locations around the world, and we will try to make the business more efficient, invest more in product, invest more in the spaces we currently run, and certainly invest in our people," Edward Shenderovich, co-founder and executive chairman of Knotel told Cheddar.

This fundraising win for Knotel comes on the heels of last week's IPO filing by WeWork’s parent company, We Co, but Shenderovich says the two companies are vying for different clients.

"We've always said we're not a co-working company and WeWork has certainly established themselves as the largest player in that space," he said. "We have always focused on larger teams. We have always focused on bringing flexible workspace to the enterprise. I think we're seeing that we're significantly more capital-efficient business."

As part of the plans to bring tailor-made, enterprise workspaces to a greater share of the globe,

The Knotel founder acknowledged the company may face challenges from "geopolitical winds" when expanding to places like Hong Kong. However, he says it will not stop them.

"China is the second largest economy in the world, and it would not be right to ignore it," he said. "Knotel's business is a business of maybe the top 30, top 50 cities in the world, and many of them are in China. And one of them is Hong Kong, so we certainly have plans to be there."

Knotel currently holds 4 million square feet in more than 200 locations in major cities, ranging from New York to Paris to Rio de Janeiro, according to its website. Founded in 2016, the company achieved the $1 billion valuation in less than four years.