The Cornell Baker Program is delighted to welcome Michael Gross, Vice Chairman of WeWork, back to Cornell to wrap up our Distinguished Speaker Series for the year. Founded in 2010, WeWork has quickly become a widely-recognized entity in the real estate industry and is on pace to become the fastest-growing lessee of new space in America. The company operates in over 60 locations and has a goal to operate in every continent (except Antarctica) by the end of 2017. WeWork is growing rapidly; in addition to launching WeLive – a co-living concept – last year, Michael announced at the 2016 Cornell Real Estate Conference that WeWork is planning to establish an internal investment arm to acquire its own properties, representing a major strategic shift for the firm.
Prior to joining WeWork, Mr. Gross was CEO of Morgans Hotel Group. Starting as CEO in 2011, he successfully led the company to restructure its debt and to increase its footprint in NYC. Mr. Gross is a graduate of the Cornell School of Hotel Administration (SHA ‘97) and was honored as one of Crain’s “40 under 40” in 2013. Students of the Baker Program last heard from Michael when he was the keynote speaker at the 2016 Cornell Real Estate Conference. We look forward to catching up on the progress that WeWork has made since then on its path to becoming one of the most valuable startups in the world.