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WeWork has found the person who will replace Adam Neumann as the chief executive of the company: Sandeep Mathrani, a seasoned real estate veteran. He will be tasked with steering the embattled co-working giant back on the right path following its failed IPO attempt.
Mathrani has been known as somewhat of a “corporate turnaround artist” in the real estate world. He was named CEO of General Growth Properties in 2011, when it was emerging from what was then the biggest real estate bankruptcy in U.S. history. Six years later, he sold the company to Brookfield Property Partners in a deal valued at approximately $15 billion.
Here’s what else we know about Mathrani:
— Most recently, Mathrani was the chief executive of Brookfield Property Partners’ retail group. At Brookfield, he led an investment in Industrious, a co-working office space startup that competes with WeWork.
— Mathrani will join WeWork as CEO starting Feb. 18, 2020 and will report to Marcelo Claure, who helped recruit him to join the company. (Claure will remain executive chairman.)
— He will succeed WeWork interim co-CEOs Sebastian Gunningham and Artie Minson, who will stay at the company during Mathrani’s onboarding.
— One of Mathrani’s first tasks will be to build out leadership since so many top executives have departed following Neumann’s exit. WeWork is planning to announce new board members and a new chief financial officer, chief marketing officer and chief communications officer soon, according to The Wall Street Journal.
Under Neumann’s leadership, WeWork positioned itself as a tech startup harnessing the “energy of We.” It’s likely that under Mathrani, the company will be a more cleanly defined real estate business.
In a recent interview with Fortune, WeWork co-founder Miguel McKelvey said, “The leadership team has spent hours and hours and hours to ensure that we have a plan that we’ll be able to succeed with.”
The new WeWork story is only beginning.
FERTILITY FUNDING: Legacy, a sperm testing and freezing startup, has raised $3.5 million in funding from Section 32, Y Combinator and Bain Capital Ventures. Last year, I noticed an uptick in venture capital funding for male fertility startups. At the time, I noted that awareness is growing around male fertility, and startups and their deep-pocketed backers are here to capitalize on it. Investors poured $646 million into the fertility sector in 2018, according to PitchBook.
In the last decade, fertility startups have been focused on hyper-targeting female millennials even though men cause or contribute to infertility in about half of cases. Companies are just now turning their attention to male partners.
Legacy founder and CEO Khaled Kteily told TechCrunch last week: “Women are taught about their fertility but men aren’t, yet the quality of their sperm is degrading over the years. Sperm counts have gone down by 50 to 60% over the last 40 years, too.”
ONE LOL THING: Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is busy adding $8 billion to his fortune, meeting with the FBI over the alleged hacking of his phone, and getting sued by his girlfriend’s brother. While we know very little about his thoughts on those developments, we do now know that the billionaire is 100% Lizzo’s biggest fan…
- Rimilia, a U.K.-based SaaS-based fintech company, raised $15 million in funding. Investors include Eight - Roads Ventures, Kennet Partners, and Silicon Valley Bank.
- Doubtnut, an India-based developer of an online learning platform for students, raised $15 million in Series A funding. Tencent led the round, and was joined by investors including Omidyar Network India, AET, Japan, Ankit Nagori, and Sequoia Capital India.
PRIVATE EQUITY DEALS
- Cascade Windows, a portfolio company of CenterOak Partners acquired Amerimax Windows & Doors, a Norcross, Ga.-based producer of value-added aluminum, steel, vinyl and fiberglass products, from OmniMax International. Financial terms weren't disclosed.
- Worldline will acquire Ingenico (ENXTPA:ING) in a cash and share deal that gives Ingenico a valuation of €7.8 billion ($8.6 billion).
- Revolution Medicines, a Redwood City, Calif.-based biotech developing targeted cancer therapies, says it plans to raise $150 million in an offering of 10 million shares priced between $14 to $16 apiece. The firm posted revenue of $20.2 million and losses of $48.8 million in 2018. Third Rock Ventures (29% pre-IPO), The Column Group (19%), and Sanofi Research Invest (8%) back the firm. It plans to list on the Nasdaq as “RVMD.” Read more.
- Behrman Capital sold ILC Dover, a Frederica, Delaware-based to New Mountain Capital. Financial terms weren't disclosed.
FIRMS + FUND
- Vestar Capital Partners, a New York-based private equity firm, raised $1.1 billion for Vestar Capital Partners VII, L.P.
- Turn/River Capital, a San Francisco-based private equity and venture capital firm, raised $420 million for its fourth fund, Turn/River Capital IV.
- Fifth Wall promoted Dan Wenhold, Kevin Campos and Vik Chawla to partner. Josh Schwartz, Kate Miller and Sarah Liu were promoted to vice president.
- Riverwood Capital promoted Harish Belur, Joaquim Lima, and Scott Ransenberg to partner.
- Graycliff Partners named Ryan Supple as a principal.