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WeWork Korea looks to ‘export’ its premium service overseas

Patricia Chun, general manager of WeWork Korea, poses before the press conference held in WeWork Seoul Square branch in Central Seoul, Tuesday. (WeWork Korea)
Patricia Chun, general manager of WeWork Korea, poses before the press conference held in WeWork Seoul Square branch in Central Seoul, Tuesday. (WeWork Korea)

Patricia Chun, general manager of WeWork Korea, said Tuesday that the company is considering launching its premium office service in the global market, driven by soaring demand for worker-friendly and customized official rental services.

Launched on May 1, the WeWork premium service is available at its Seoul Square, Gangnam, Yeoiudo and Gwanghwamun branches. The firm plans to export the service to the global market including the United States.

Among global WeWork branches, WeWork Korea will also be the first to introduce a mobile check-in service as well. Instead of using key cards to enter their office, workers can simply use their phones.

Based on the service, the firm plans to boost its satellite office business.

“In the post-pandemic era, settling up satellite offices has become a must for companies to enhance the welfare of employees who have a hard time commuting to (their company’s) headquarters,” said Patricia Chun, CEO of WeWork Korea.

Clients from South Korea can also work at WeWork global branch offices during their business trips using the All Access service for a monthly fee of 225,000 won ($176).

Joining hands with Yardi, a US-based software company for real estate, WeWork Korea, together with other global branches, looks to further accelerate its office management IT solutions for corporate clients with over 50 workers. Employers can keep a record of the time each of their employees punched in for work and access other data to check work efficiency, Chun said.

As for business expansion, Chun said the firm might lease additional floors in existing WeWork buildings. At the same time, the company will look for optimal office buildings it can rent out to clients. “Currently, there are few options in the Gangnam or Pangyo areas -- both are famous home grounds for the tech industry.”

The company’s sales surged on-year by 8 percent to 99.7 billion won in 2021. Sales jumped over 20 percent compared to pre-pandemic figures in 2019.

Founded in 2016, WeWork Korea currently operates 17 branches in Seoul and two in Busan. Chun has led the firm since 2020.

By Byun Hye-jin (hyejin2@heraldcorp.com)
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