Tue. Oct 19th, 2021

© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: A WeWork logo is seen outside its offices in San Francisco, California, USA on September 30, 2019. REUTERS / Kate Munsch / File Photo

(Reuters) -WebWork on Thursday began launching to share offices that had won a U.S. federal contract to provide flexible work options to government employees, as an increase in COVID-19 cases causes employers to reconsider a full return in the offices.

A company spokesman backed by SoftBank Group Corp. said the contract, awarded by the U.S. General Services Administration to WeWork and four other contractors, is up to $ 10 million annually and a five-year period .

The pandemic has marked a step away from a traditional self-employment and into a more hybrid model, where employees have the flexibility to work from offices, shared workspaces, public areas and home.

The rapidly expanding Delta variant of the coronavirus and the subsequent hardening of curbs in some places have exacerbated the concerns of office providers as companies opt for shorter leases and many employees continue to work remotely.

Earlier this month, WeWork saw a decline in second-quarter revenue from the previous three months, as the Delta variant led to a slower-than-expected recovery during the first half of the year.

Numerous U.S. federal agencies last month ordered masks on federal buildings from COVID-19 hotspots, according to White House instructions.

WeWork in March agreed to go public through a merger with BowX Acquisition Corp., a special-purpose acquisition company, in a deal that valued it at $ 9 billion.

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