Following the cancelation of shared workspaces giant WeWork's IPO, and concern that its expansion will be affected, and fears that the company will be unable to meet its obligations in the future, it turns out that in Israel, WeWork's biggest lease (and perhaps other leases also) has actually been signed by Ampa.
Almost two years after the reports of the huge lease signed by WeWork in the new ToHa building in Tel Aviv, sources inform "Globes" that the company that actually signed the lease is Ampa Real Estate. Ampa has cooperated closely with WeWork since it began working in Israel. WeWork Israel is the largest tenant in the building, with six and a half floors and 20,000 square meters, more than one third of the ToHa tower's 57,000 square meters of space, currently fully occupied.
ToHa was developed and built by Israeli income producing property companies Amot Investments Ltd. (TASE:AMOT) and Bayside Land Corp. Ltd.(Gav Yam) (TASE: BYSD1). WeWork Israel's lease there is for 15 years with an extension option for an estimated NIS 300 million. An investigation by "Globes" revealed that Ampa, owned by Shlomi Fogel and the Nakash brothers, is the actual tenant. As far as is known, Ampa manages WeWork's real estate agreements in Israel, and provides the guarantees to the owners of the ToHa property, together with the global WeWork company. It is believed that the ToHa owners demanded larger than usual guarantees for WeWork's lease.
A source close to the deal told "Globes' today that WeWork's operations in ToHa are profitable and flourishing. Even if it has to leave the site in the future, it will be able to lease the space quickly at much higher rent. The source added that no problem was likely with WeWork's lease, and in any case, "The building is a new one in an attractive location. We believe that no empty space will remain in it for long, even if WeWork leaves."
As part of its rapid deployment, WeWork currently offers quite a number of shared workspaces in Israel. The company currently holds and operates 10 office properties in Israel, mostly in Tel Aviv. Another important property is a building on Dubnov Street in Tel Aviv, WeWork's first property in Israel, all of which it rented out last year to Microsoft. This is WeWork's only deal in Israel on this format, which is also used for other properties elsewhere in the world.
Construction of the ToHa building in Tel Aviv at the intersection of Hashalom Road, Yigal Alon Street, and Totzeret Ha'aretz Street near to the Hashalom railway station, was completed in January 2019. As of now, all the office space in the building is leased. NIS 950 million was invested in the project, which is projected to generate NIS 95-100 million in NOI a year.
Published by Globes, Israel business news - en.globes.co.il - on October 2, 2019
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