Wednesday 23 October 2019 9:24 am

Exclusive: Flexible office space firm Central Working falls into administration

London-based flexible office space group Central Working has collapsed into administration.

The co-working business, which hosts 1,850 companies across 11 sites in the UK, has appointed administrators from independent advisory firm Quantuma.

Read more: Softbank seizes control of Wework in deal making Adam Neumann a billionaire

A letter to tenants seen by City A.M. said that buyers “are currently undertaking due diligence on our company”, but did not reveal the identity of the interested parties.

The collapse comes amid concerns over the co-working space business model after US property giant Wework pulled its IPO.

Central Working told its tenants, which include tech startup accelerator Techstars, that it is “business as usual” and there would be “no disruption to your general day to day”.

The firm added: “As you can appreciate this process is quite fluid and inevitably, external influences will seek to unsettle our plans and spread rumours, but we expect to be able to update you with new information very shortly. We ask during this time for your patience.”

Central Working said its offices host 3,500 “thinkers, dreamers and doers” as well as 19 office dogs “all in need of a good petting”.

The firm, which was founded in 2011 and employs 48 members of staff, hired joint administrators Andrew Watling and Carl Jackson at the end of last week.

Three of Central Working’s seven London sites are based in the City, where a growing number of co-working ventures have been taking up space to attract new tech firms in the area.

The news marks the latest sign of stress in the co-working industry, which has been overshadowed in recent weeks by troubles at work space giant Wework.

Read more: This workspace hub thinks it’s solved Wework’s business model problems

The struggling property company’s board has accepted a financial lifeline from Softbank, the Japanese investor,  in a deal that gives co-founder Adam Neumann $1.7bn (£1.3bn) but cuts most of his ties with the company.

Wework, which had risked running out of cash in the coming weeks, chose Softbank’s rescue package over a rival deal put forward by lender JP Morgan Chase.