WeWork to operate co-working spaces in some Saks Fifth Avenue stores

WeWork offices in San Francisco
A WeWork logo is seen at a WeWork office in San Francisco, California, U.S. September 30, 2019. REUTERS/Kate Munsch

Aug 10 (Reuters) - Saks Fifth Avenue owner Hudson's Bay Co will convert parts of some department stores into co-working spaces, which will be managed by office-sharing startup WeWork, the companies said, at a time when many employees are negotiating remote-work policies.

Hudson's Bay will open its first five co-working offices, named SaksWorks, across the Tri-State area including Fifth Avenue Flagship in Manhattan next month. The luxury retailer plans to launch more office spaces to target people who work remotely from the suburbs.

The work-from-home lifestyle has weighed heavily on WeWork by reducing occupancy and increasing operating costs, while low traffic at brick-and-mortar stores hurt sales at department stores in the United States.

Like many retailers, Hudson's Bay has also been trying to recover from the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic by bolstering its digital business as well as forming new partnerships, including one with fast-fashion brand Forever 21.

WeWork, meanwhile, said on Monday that it partnered with real-estate services firm Cushman & Wakefield (CWK.N) to help landlords and businesses create a hybrid, flexible workplace.

In March, the startup had agreed to go public through a merger with a blank-check firm in a deal that valued it at $9 billion. read more

Reporting by Praveen Paramasivam in Bengaluru, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips

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