SoftBank


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SoftBank Shares Fall On Concerns Of Ties To Saudi Money

SoftBank shares fall on concerns of ties to Saudi money CNBC - 10 months ago
  • Global concerns about a missing Saudi journalist are dragging down one of Japan's largest tech giants.
  • Conglomerate SoftBank saw its stock fall by more than 6 percent on Monday in Tokyo trade.
  • In fact, a significant amount of SoftBank's investment capital comes from the country, which is now under withering global scrutiny amid concerns about the disappearance and suspected killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
  • Analysts attributed the Monday stock move to the questions swirling about how other countries and investors will respond to the kingdom.

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SoftBank Gives Startups Billions Of Reasons To Hold Off IPOs

SoftBank Gives Startups Billions of Reasons to Hold Off IPOs Wall Street Journal - 10 months ago
  • In what would be by far SoftBank’s most ambitious startup investment, the Japanese company is in discussions to take a majority stake in WeWork with a $15 billion to $20 billion investment, people familiar with the talks said this week.
  • The negotiations are continuing and other scenarios are on the table, some of the people said.
  • Ever since it started up its tech-focused Vision Fund last year, SoftBank has shaken up the venture capital industry by rushing hundreds of millions, if not billions, into startups and taking the place of funds typically raised in an IPO.
  • SoftBank is discussing a $15 billion to $20 billion investment in WeWork.

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Boston Dynamics’ Spot Is Being Put To Work

Boston Dynamics’ Spot is being put to work CNBC - 10 months ago
  • Boston Dynamics is testing its robotic dog for commercial uses.
  •  The robot is shown carrying specialized equipment that can survey work progress and it has a camera in its hand to perform detailed inspections.
  • Boston Dynamics, which is owned by Softbank, said that SpotMini is in preproduction and plans to build about 100 of the robots in the next year.
  • The company also released a video of its humanoid robot Atlas performing new tricks Thursday.

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SoftBank Is Betting The Vision Fund On WeWork

SoftBank is betting the Vision Fund on WeWorkTheodore Schleifer / ReCode - 11 months ago
  • SoftBank is preparing to an invest a massive amount of its landmark Vision Fund on the success of one company, WeWork, in a deal that would essentially bet the farm on the New York-based real estate giant.
  • The Vision Fund is a $100 billion vehicle but could invest as much as $20 billion into the deal, taking a majority stake in the company, according to The Wall Street Journal.
  • The talks in New York, confirmed by a source familiar with the matter, have been described to Recode as tense.
  • It would also raise questions about the future of WeWork, given that the Vision Fund would hold a majority stake, the source said.

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SoftBank Is Considering Taking A Majority Stake In WeWork

SoftBank is considering taking a majority stake in WeWorkKate Clark / TechCrunch - 11 months ago
  • SoftBank may soon own up to 50 percent of WeWork, a well-funded provider of co-working spaces headquartered in New York, according to a new report from The Wall Street Journal.
  • SoftBank is reportedly weighing an investment between $15 billion and $20 billion, which would come from its $92 billion Vision Fund, a super-sized venture fund led by Japanese entrepreneur and investor Masayoshi Son.
  • This August, WeWork raised another $1 billion from SoftBank in convertible debt.

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Toyota, SoftBank Join Forces To Build Self-Driving Cars That Deliver Meals, Health Care

Toyota, SoftBank Join Forces to Build Self-Driving Cars That Deliver Meals, Health Care Wall Street Journal - 11 months ago
  • To deliver meals, health care and other services in self-driving cars to an aging populace in Japan, in hopes that some of the technology will prove exportable.
  • The two companies said they would form a joint venture by the end of March, with 50.25% owned by SoftBank and 49.75% owned by Toyota, to deploy vehicles in a country where 83% of its bus operators aren’t profitable.

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UK Toys With Blockchain For Tracking Properties Across England And Wales

UK toys with blockchain for tracking properties across England and Wales David Canellis / The Next Web - 11 months ago
  • Here’s the latest in government-sponsored distributed ledger tech (DLT): England’s primary land registry has its eyes on using the blockchain to supe up its new property tracking system.
  • Her Majesty’s (HM) Land Registry has just announced it will be blockchainifying its new system, Digital Street, as it moves to the second phase of development.
  • HM Land Registry is the United Kingdom’s go-to department for property record keeping. It manages more than 25 million titles that detail ownership of over 85 percent of the land mass across England and Wales.
  • Maintaining those records can be an incredibly cumbersome task – especially considering it must make updates for every buy and sell transaction that occurs across both countries.

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SoftBank Leads $800M In Funding For Real-estate Unicorns Compass And Opendoor

SoftBank leads $800M in funding for real-estate unicorns Compass and OpendoorMaria Deutscher / SiliconANGLE - 11 months ago
  • The Japanese tech giant today was named as the lead backer of two separate $400 million funding rounds into startups Compass Inc.
  • Compass is the bigger player of the two, with a post-money valuation of $4.4 billion, according to Bloomberg.
  • The startup has used these technological building blocks to create out a massive real-estate brokerage business.
  • Compass plans to use the newly raised capital to expand into more cities, an effort that will see the startup expand beyond the U.S.

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China’s Didi Chuxing Launches Taxi-hailing Service In Japan

China’s Didi Chuxing launches taxi-hailing service in JapanJon Russell / TechCrunch - 11 months ago
  • China’s Didi Chuxing is fighting fires at home around passenger safety, but overseas the ride-hailing giant has moved into another new market after its taxi-booking service began operations in Japan.
  • The service has gone live in Osaka, the city of nearly nine million people, and parts of the surrounding area including Kansai International Airport.
  • Didi, which is valued at $56 billion, entered Japan in partnership with SoftBank, which is of course one of its investors.
  • The company is going to stick to license taxis and not private cars because the latter is banned in Japan.

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Food Delivery Start-up Postmates Cracks A 1 Billion Dollar Valuation

Food delivery start-up Postmates cracks a 1 billion dollar valuation CNBC - 11 months ago
  • Postmates, the US online food delivery start-up, has raised $300 million in venture capital funding, boosting its financial firepower against well-capitalized competitors including Uber and SoftBank-backed DoorDash.
  • The latest round led by Tiger Global Management values Postmates at about $1.2 billion, including the new funds, according to a person familiar with the matter, up from $600 million in 2016.
  • The US food delivery market is experiencing a flurry of competition and investment as companies seek to capture the loyalty of a growing group of consumers who are opting to eat at home instead of going out to restaurants.

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Is Uber Selling Its Southeast Asia Business To Grab?

Is Uber selling its Southeast Asia business to Grab?Jon Russell / TechCrunch - 1 year ago
  • If you read the tech press, you might have seen reports that Uber is pursuing a sale in Southeast Asia that would see Grab, its Singapore-headquartered rival valued at $6 billion, acquire Uber’s business in the region.
  • Reliable data is hard to come by, but it is fairly widely accepted that Uber, once the leader in Southeast Asia, has dropped behind Grab across the region as a whole, while both companies trail local startup Go-Jek — a unicorn itself, too — in Indonesia, the only market Go-Jek operates in.
  • Despite a cumulative population that exceeds 600 million people, Southeast Asia’s ride-sharing business did just $5.1 billion last year, according to estimates from a report authored by Google and investment firm Temasek.
  • Pitting two of its portfolio together in a loss-making market probably doesn’t make sense to SoftBank at this point.

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Uber Bookings Up, Losses Down In Fourth Quarter

Uber bookings up, losses down in fourth quarterSteven Musil / CNET - 2 years ago
  • Uber cut its losses in the past quarter, despite a rough year of executive turmoil and scandal.
  • Uber managed to grow its business in the last quarter, despite a few bumps in the road.The San Francisco-based ride-hailing startup's revenue in the fourth quarter rose 11.8 percent to $2.2 billion compared with the previous quarter, a source confirmed Tuesday.
  • Last month, the startup closed a deal to sell $10 billion of its stock to a consortium led by Japanese internet giant SoftBank Group for a 15 percent stake in Uber, making Softbank Uber's largest shareholder.Uber agreed last week to pay $245 million to settle a trade secret lawsuit brought by Alphabet's self-driving car spinoff, Waymo.
  • Tech Culture: From film and television to social media and games, here's your place for the lighter side of tech.Batteries Not Included: The CNET team shares experiences that remind us why tech stuff is cool.

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Uber’s Latest Valuation: $72 Billion

Uber’s latest valuation: $72 billionTheodore Schleifer / ReCode - 2 years ago
  • Rony Abovitz, the founder, president and CEO of Magic Leap, will be live from Recode’s Code Media conference in Huntington Beach, Calif., on Tuesday, Feb.
  • Abovitz runs one of the most-buzzed-about — and secretive — technology startups in years.
  • How much a company is worth is always a bit of an artificial question in Silicon Valley.
  • The settlement between Alphabet’s Waymo and Uber on Friday valued the company at $72 billion, which sources involved in the negotiation say is the company’s valuation after SoftBank invested $1.25 billion in the company last month.

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SoftBank’s Vision Fund Has Already Spent Over $35 Billion On Investments

SoftBank’s Vision Fund has already spent over $35 billion on investmentsJon Russell / TechCrunch - 2 years ago
  • SoftBank made waves when its gigantic Vision Fund hit a massive $93 billion first close of a targeted $100 billion total last year, but already it is clear why the firm is reportedly planning a sequel.
  • That Uber deal isn’t even counted in today’s statement, which showed the Vision Fund has deployed $27.5 million on deals, as of January 1.
  • A selection of other investments include ARM, Nvidia, Flipkart, Paytm parent One97 Communication, OYO Rooms, and Improbable.
  • The Vision Fund is designed as part of SoftBank’s plan to “keep growing for 300 years” by backing category winners from across the world and helping the companies work with each other, and developing its focus on telecom and AI.

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Where SoftBank Has Invested Its $98 Billion Vision Fund

Where SoftBank has invested its $98 billion Vision FundRani Molla / ReCode - 2 years ago

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SoftBank Considers IPO For Wireless Business, Reportedly Seeking $18 Billion

SoftBank considers IPO for wireless business, reportedly seeking $18 billionReuters / VentureBeat - 2 years ago
  • SoftBank Group said on Monday it was considering listing its Japanese wireless business – a move that could reportedly raise $18 billion and would accelerate the conglomerate’s transformation into one of the world’s biggest tech investors.
  • A spin-off – potentially the biggest IPO by a Japanese company in nearly two decades – would give the unit more autonomy and help investors value the business as well as its parent which has myriad holdings across the tech industry.
  • SoftBank Group is aiming to sell about 30 percent of SoftBank Corp, Japan’s No.
  • “It makes sense to spin off the mobile-phone business using a public offering that would leave SoftBank in control and provide SoftBank with more cash to pursue its strategy of investing in companies with potentially high growth prospects,” Erik Gordon, a professor at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business.

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The ‘SoftBank Effect’: Megarounds Drive U.S. Venture Funding Up 17% In 2017

The ‘SoftBank Effect’: Megarounds drive U.S. venture funding up 17% in 2017Duncan Riley / SiliconANGLE - 2 years ago
  • Thanks to a continued flush of huge funding rounds, venture capital flowing into U.S.-based companies rose 17 percent last year, to $71.9 billion.
  • The numbers, released early Wednesday by PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP and CB Insights’ in their quarterly MoneyTree Report, found that overall venture capital had a strong year in the U.S.
  • The report noted that in 2017, there were 109 megarounds, beating the previous record of 107 in 2015.
  • “2017 closed strong because of megaround activity — a theme throughout the year,” Anand Sanwal, co-founder and chief executive officer of CB Insights, said in a statement.

Sprint’s Marcelo Claure Will Join Uber’s Board, Which Will Grow Soon To 17 Directors

Kara Swisher / ReCode - 2 years ago
  • Sprint Marcelo Claure, who was once on the short list to be CEO of Uber, will be joining its board in the next few weeks, several sources confirmed.
  • The globe-trotting telecom CEO, whose name has been previously floated for the seat, will take one of two director slots that Japanese investment giant SoftBank is getting, as part of a successful tender offer by SoftBank that is set to be completed at the end of this month.
  • The other will go to Rajeev Misra, who is head of SoftBank’s Vision Fund that led the multi-billion deal to buy a big stake in the car-hailing company.
  • The pair will join the 11 current Uber directors, who include current Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi and ousted CEO and co-founder Travis Kalanick, as well as large investors and several independent ones.

Benchmark Is Selling $900 Million Of Its Holdings In Uber

CNBC - 2 years ago
  • Cisco Investments, Samsung Catalyst Fund and Robert Bosch Venture Capital, are among investors in Aimotive, a Budapest-based start-up developing self-driving car systems.
  • Despite the failures of several start-ups making smart kitchen appliances -- like Juicero, Teaforia and The Orange Chef -- investors are still placing bets on companies in food-tech.
  • Benchmark Capital will end up selling about $900 million of its Uber stock to SoftBank and other buyers, or about 14.5% of the venture capital firm's holdings in the company.
  • Benchmark, which said last year that Uber could soon be worth more than $100 billion, tried to sell about 25 percent of its shares in the company last month at a price that was less than half that.