Portland-based Wex Inc. is shelving plans to expand into a $50 million office building at The Downs in Scarborough, citing changing work habits and less need for office space in the post-pandemic world.
The payment-processing technology company said Thursday that it made the decision to reflect a “changing work environment” in which many people who are working from home are expected to continue to do so or adopt a hybrid work routine with time split between conventional offices and home offices.
Wex said earlier this year that it expected most employees to return to its offices – it has two buildings in South Portland and two more on the Portland waterfront – by this summer. That was later shifted to the end of this year, company spokesman Rob Gould said.
The company is still figuring out how many employees will work full-time in the office, how many will adopt a hybrid schedule and how many will continue to work full-time from home, Gould added.
Employees are being told to coordinate with their managers to figure out where they will work in the future, he said. A handful are back at work in the company’s buildings, Gould said, and most aren’t working in those offices full time.
Those changes in working locations meant the company no longer had an immediate need for more office space, said Safet Cobaj, Wex’s vice president for global real estate.
WEX has 5,435 full-time employees worldwide, with 1,216 of them in Maine.
This story will be updated.