Once an entrepreneur, always an entrepreneur. Although WeWork is now filing for bankruptcy, its co-founder Adam Neumann remains no stranger to business creation. In 2019, the Israeli-American was fired by the WeWork board of directors for nefarious management of the group. Never mind that the 44-year-old returned to the spotlight last year with new projects.
He notably created the company Flow, specializing in apartment sharing and leasing. Concretely, tenants' rents are used to gradually purchase a property, the final price of which is lower than the market price. A principle similar to that of automobiles, which allows young buyers to become owners at lower costs. Among housing, Adam Neumann relies on its portfolio of 4,000 American apartments, estimated in 2022 at a value of one billion dollars.
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In addition to leasing purchases, the entrepreneur offers a whole series of services such as “adult dormitories”, concierge services, pet sitting and even assistance with moving in and moving out. Flow would also allow holding a digital wallet with cryptocurrencies to “carry out external transactions” and would have “a token rewards program”, according to Forbes magazine.
If, for the moment, the project still seems vague, it is already a unicorn and has a valuation of a billion dollars. The financing of the company rests above all on one and the same man: Marc Andreessen. In August 2022, the latter deposited $350 million to support his friend's initiative, thanks to his Andreessen Horowitz fund, aka “a16z”. In a press release, Marc Andreessen assured last year that Adam Neumann was “a visionary leader who with Wework revolutionized the largest asset class in the world, [i.e.] commercial real estate”.
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Building on this enthusiasm, Adam Neumann launched another company this year, called Flowcarbon. This company also has a link with cryptocurrencies since it “transforms carbon credits into products on the blockchain”. On its site, the company predicts that “carbon markets will increase fifteenfold by 2030 to achieve the climate goals of the Paris Agreement.” “Flowcarbon is able to add liquidity and transparency to the carbon market, allowing more capital to flow directly to large conservation, reforestation and ecosystem restoration projects,” the presentation completes. of the project. Here again, the Andressen Horowitz fund contributed to the financing with a raising of $38 million in a total funding round of $70 million.
But this second company fails to convince, and Flowcarbon is even accused of being “a scam within a scam” by the media Vox. “I think they are trying to solve something that is not a problem,” Robert Mendelsohn, professor of forest policy and economics at Yale, told Recode. “The credits themselves may not cause carbon reduction,” he adds. Is this (still) a project that will not hold water? Adam Neumann's two companies should now be closely scrutinized, particularly by investors.