9984.T - SoftBank Group Corp.

Tokyo - Tokyo Delayed price. Currency in JPY
5,360.00
-100.00 (-1.83%)
At close: 10:20AM JST
Stock chart is not supported by your current browser
Previous close5,460.00
Open5,390.00
Bid5,358.00 x 0
Ask5,359.00 x 0
Day's range5,356.00 - 5,409.00
52-week range3,958.00 - 6,045.00
Volume6,019,300
Avg. volume13,488,556
Market cap11.103T
Beta (5Y monthly)1.63
PE ratio (TTM)39.67
EPS (TTM)135.12
Earnings date07 May 2020 - 11 May 2020
Forward dividend & yield44.00 (0.80%)
Ex-dividend date30 Mar 2020
1y target est13,753.00
  • Grab Nabs $856 Million From Japanese Investors Amid Merger Speculation With Rival Gojek
    Skift

    Grab Nabs $856 Million From Japanese Investors Amid Merger Speculation With Rival Gojek

    Southeast Asia's Grab said Japan's Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc (MUFG) and IT services firm TIS Inc have agreed to invest a combined $856 million in the ride-hailing firm, as it seeks to expand aggressively into financial services. MUFG, Japan's biggest bank by assets, has agreed to invest $706 million, the companies said in statements […]

  • Grab Raises $850 Million to Expand Into Financial Services
    Bloomberg

    Grab Raises $850 Million to Expand Into Financial Services

    (Bloomberg) -- Follow Bloomberg on LINE messenger for all the business news and analysis you need.Grab, Southeast Asia’s most valuable startup, raised more than $850 million from Japan’s Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. and TIS Inc. to bankroll its expansion into financial services in the region.The sum includes $706 million from MUFG, Japan’s largest bank, and $150 million from TIS, a provider of data center and cloud services, according to joint statements from the companies.Backed by SoftBank Group Corp., Grab has been expanding into financial services, building on its ride-hailing, food delivery and e-wallet offerings in an effort to become a one-stop shop for on-demand services in Southeast Asia. Tie-ups between tech startups and banks are becoming more common in the region, where widespread smartphone use promises greater access to clients who have traditionally been neglected by the financial system.More on how a fintech arena is forming in Southeast AsiaGrab will co-develop financial products and solutions with the two investors, President Ming Maa said in a statement. The investments demonstrate “their confidence in Grab’s super-app strategy and our ability to build a sustainable long-term business,” he said.For Tokyo-based MUFG, the alliance will deepen its expansion in Southeast Asia, where it has been buying large stakes in banks to make up for weak growth opportunities at home. The lender’s biggest investment in a tech startup also reflects its digital push under Hironori Kamezawa, who is set to become chief executive officer in April.Read how MUFG’s Grab investment is kicking off a new era at the bank“We are excited to be able to provide customers with next-generation financial services by combining Grab’s advanced technologies and data management expertise with our financial knowledge and know-how,” Kamezawa, who is currently chief digital transformation officer, said in the statement.Grab will give “first-choice bank” status to MUFG and its Southeast Asian units, including PT Bank Danamon Indonesia and Bangkok-based Bank of Ayudhya Pcl. While the startup doesn’t disclose its number of users, it says its app has been downloaded onto more than 166 million mobile devices in the region.The partners will jointly develop a new “scoring model” for lending by using data on each other’s customers, Masakazu Osawa, a senior official involved in MUFG’s digital transformation, said on a call with reporters. The data sharing would require the customer’s consent, he added. Under Grab’s deal with Tokyo-based TIS, the companies will work together on digital payments infrastructure in Southeast Asia and Japan to enable better adoption of cashless options, the firms said in a separate statement.(Updates with MUFG comment in the second-to-last paragraph)To contact the reporters on this story: Yoolim Lee in Singapore at yoolim@bloomberg.net;Taiga Uranaka in Tokyo at turanaka@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Edwin Chan at echan273@bloomberg.net, Russell Ward, Marcus WrightFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • SoftBank leads $265 million investments in two U.S.-based start-ups
    Reuters

    SoftBank leads $265 million investments in two U.S.-based start-ups

    The Japanese company earlier this month reported a second straight quarter of losses at its first Vision Fund, pushing Chief Executive Officer Masayoshi Son to scale back his second fund. Karius, which markets a test that can quickly detect hard-to-diagnose infections through a simple taking of blood, said the funding would expand its commercial outreach and clinical research.

  • T-Mobile, Sprint Revise Deal Terms After Regulatory Approval
    Bloomberg

    T-Mobile, Sprint Revise Deal Terms After Regulatory Approval

    (Bloomberg) -- T-Mobile US Inc. and Sprint Corp. agreed to new terms for their pending merger that take account of the slide in Sprint shares since the transaction was first agreed, putting the industry-altering deal a step closer to completion.T-Mobile owners will get roughly 11 shares of Sprint for each of their stock, the companies said Thursday. That’s an increase from a ratio of 9.75 previously and is more favorable for T-Mobile’s German owner Deutsche Telekom AG.The equity value of the amended deal is about $37 billion compared with the original agreement of $26.5 billion, according to Bloomberg Intelligence analyst Erhan Gurses. The higher valuation partly reflects the 62% gain in T-Mobile shares since the all-stock transaction was announced almost two years ago, despite the deterioration in Sprint’s business.Getting one of the biggest U.S. wireless mergers ever over the finish line would be a boon for Deutsche Telekom as it will reduce its reliance on Europe, where carriers are struggling to grow amid fierce competition. T-Mobile makes up more than half of Deutsche Telekom’s sales, up from about a third in 2014. A completed deal will also benefit Sprint owner SoftBank Group Corp. by allowing its chairman, Masayoshi Son, to better focus on his technology investments and the $100 billion Vision Fund.The combined company, which will operate under the T-Mobile name, will have a regular monthly subscriber base of about 80 million -- in the same league as AT&T Inc., which has 75 million subscribers, and Verizon Communications Inc., which has 114 million.When the transaction closes, which could happen as soon as April 1, Deutsche Telekom is expected to keep 43% of the merged entity, while SoftBank has 24%. The rest will be held by public shareholders.Deutsche Telekom shares fell 1.3% to trade at 16.41 euros in Frankfurt. Sprint shares were up 5% to $9.96 at 11:01 a.m. in New York, while T-Mobile was down 1.8% to $97.73.The original accord, which united the third- and fourth-largest U.S. wireless carriers, was forged in April 2018. That pact lapsed on Nov. 1, and the companies didn’t initially renew the terms while they fought for government approval. When a federal judge rejected a state lawsuit to block the transaction earlier this month, that put the talks on the front burner.Along the way, Sprint’s condition has worsened. That added pressure to redraw the agreement so that it was more favorable to Deutsche Telekom.SoftBank agreed to surrender 48.8 million T-Mobile shares that it will acquire in the merger to the combined company immediately after the transaction closes. But those shares could be reissued to SoftBank by 2025 if the new company’s stock stays above $150 for a period of time.That arrangement -- having SoftBank relinquish the stock after the deal closes -- was structured so that the deal wouldn’t have to go before another shareholder vote.Sprint investors other than SoftBank will still get the original ratio of 0.10256 T-Mobile shares for each Sprint share -- the equivalent of about 9.75 Sprint shares for each T-Mobile share.Sprint’s monthly churn -- a closely watched measure of how many customers leave -- has risen to nearly 2%. That means roughly a quarter of its subscriber base is quitting the carrier each year. And the company isn’t making up for the decline by charging more: Average revenue per customer has fallen 5% since the deal was announced.Analysts such as LightShed Partners’ Walt Piecyk said the merger’s exchange ratio should be closer to 12, given Sprint’s deteriorated business.(Updates with valuation detail in third paragraph, updates share prices.)To contact the reporters on this story: Scott Moritz in New York at smoritz6@bloomberg.net;Stefan Nicola in Berlin at snicola2@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Nick Turner at nturner7@bloomberg.net, Jennifer RyanFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Global telcos join Alphabet, SoftBank's flying cellphone antenna lobbying effort
    Reuters

    Global telcos join Alphabet, SoftBank's flying cellphone antenna lobbying effort

    Alphabet and SoftBank's attempts to launch flying cellphone antennas high into the atmosphere have received backing from global telcos, energizing lobbying efforts aimed at driving regulatory approval for the emerging technology. Loon, which was spun out of Google parent Alphabet Inc's business incubator, and HAPSMobile, a unit of SoftBank Group Corp's domestic telco, plan to deliver high speed internet to remote areas by flying network equipment at high altitudes. Lobbying efforts by the two firms, which formed an alliance last year, are being joined by companies including aerospace firm Airbus , network vendors Nokia and Ericsson and telcos China Telecom , Deutsche Telekom , Telefonica and Bharti Airtel .

  • SoftBank’s Son to Pitch U.S. Investors Under Cloud of WeWork
    Bloomberg

    SoftBank’s Son to Pitch U.S. Investors Under Cloud of WeWork

    (Bloomberg) -- Masayoshi Son will head to New York next month for the first time since the implosion of WeWork, seeking to persuade hedge funds and institutional investors that the fortunes of SoftBank Group Corp. have turned since the disastrous investment.The Japanese billionaire is scheduled to address investors on March 2. There, he could point to the approved sale of Sprint Corp., a rally in Uber Technologies Inc. shares and Elliott Management Corp.’s purchase of SoftBank stock as signs of progress at his company, said people familiar with the plans. It’s unclear where WeWork will fit into the agenda.Within SoftBank, there’s disagreement about how to convey the company’s strategy. Son, 62, is known for his eccentric financial presentations, which have included a “hypothetical illustration” of WeWork profitability and stock photos of ocean waves and calm waters. One memorable slide from 2014 contained only a drawing of a goose and the words: “SoftBank = Goose.” Many staff at headquarters in Tokyo love the founder’s showmanship, but some senior executives are exasperated and argue a clearer and more sober message is needed, said people familiar with internal discussions who asked not to be identified because the matter is private.Ultimately, Son will decide. He has downplayed any pressure from Elliott, a New York-based activist investor that disclosed a nearly $3 billion stake in SoftBank this month. Son called Elliott an “important partner” and said he’s in broad agreement with the investor’s arguments for buybacks and increasing the stock price. Son has signaled less receptiveness to Elliott’s other suggestions: selling more of the stake in Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and reining in the Vision Fund, a $100 billion investment vehicle that accounted for more than $10 billion of losses in the past two quarters.In private meetings with SoftBank, Elliott raised issues over the clarity of SoftBank’s strategy, people familiar with the talks said. SoftBank is planning to make hires within its investor relations department to help shape the message to shareholders. SoftBank declined to comment. A spokesperson for Elliott declined to comment.“Right now, serious heat is being applied on Son,” said Justin Tang, head of Asian research at United First Partners in Singapore. “Son has to be seen actually doing something.”Son’s heading into the meeting with one win under his belt: T-Mobile US Inc. and Sprint have agreed to new terms for their pending merger, a key step toward completing a transaction that will unload the loss-making carrier and unlock new capital for SoftBank. Its shares rose as much as 3.3% in Tokyo Friday.T-Mobile, Sprint Renew Deal as Merger Clears Regulatory HurdlesAlthough next month’s event was scheduled before Elliott disclosed its stake and is not designed to specifically address the activist investor’s involvement, it will be a focus for attendees, said people familiar with the preparations. Executives are bracing for questions about Elliott’s intentions and how far the shareholder will go to boost the stock’s value.Goldman Sachs Group Inc. is organizing the March event, the people said. The firm, which helped Japan’s Sony Corp. and Toshiba Corp. in their dealings with activist investors, is vying for the job of advising SoftBank on Elliott, said a different person said. However, SoftBank is likely to manage the relationship in-house, another person said. The job may fall to Marcelo Claure, the chief operating officer who’s helping oversee the WeWork debacle; Katsunori Sago, the chief strategy officer and a former Goldman Sachs executive; or Ron Fisher, a director and trusted adviser to Son. A Goldman representative declined to comment on SoftBank.Dogs and PizzaSoftBank is recovering from a series of stumbles in recent months. WeWork’s plan to go public last year imploded, forcing SoftBank to arrange a rescue financing of $9.5 billion in October. Uber, despite a two-month surge, is still trading about 10% below last year’s offering price. The Vision Fund has suffered other high-profile setbacks, including investments in failed online retailer Brandless Inc., dog-walking app Wag Labs Inc. and pizza robot company Zume Pizza Inc.Elliott has said it took the stake in SoftBank because the Japanese company’s shares are woefully undervalued compared with its assets. Son himself has been pleading the case with increasing frequency. SoftBank’s own sum-of-parts calculation puts its total value at 12,300 yen a share ($111). That’s more than double SoftBank’s actual share price, which values the company at about $104 billion. Elliott has pegged SoftBank’s net asset value at about $230 billion, people familiar with the discussions have said.The disconnect between what SoftBank and Elliott say the company is worth and the market value can be explained by several quirks of how the business is run, according to a report from Pierre Ferragu, an analyst at New Street Research. Many shareholders would like the company to return more capital and improve its governance, he wrote. Risks associated with the Vision Fund and a lack of details about tax liabilities associated with cashing out its investments are other factors.SoftBank recognized the need for more oversight as early as 2018, when it charged Claure with a broad review of operations across SoftBank companies. Claure, the former head of Sprint, spent months assembling a team of about 40 executives. In the end, he was forced to cede control of the so-called SoftBank Operating Group to the man it was supposed to be overseeing: Rajeev Misra, the head of the Vision Fund.Elliott wants SoftBank to set up a special committee to review investment processes at the Vision Fund. Elliott argues the fund has dragged down the share price despite making up a small portion of assets under management, said people familiar with the discussions.Some at SoftBank are resistant to the idea of an oversight committee. Instead, SoftBank is seeking to resolve issues at the Vision Fund with new governance standards for the companies it invests in. The new rules will encompass how the fund approaches the composition of the board of directors, founder and management rights, rights of shareholders, and mitigation of potential conflicts of interest.Son has conceded that missteps with the original fund is making it difficult to raise money for a successor. He said last week that SoftBank may need to invest in startups using solely its own capital for a year or two.‘Black Swan’Elliott is also calling for a buyback of as much as $20 billion. A repurchase of that scale could boost SoftBank’s shares by 40%, Ferragu estimated. SoftBank’s last share repurchase was announced about a year ago, a record 600 billion yen. It sparked a rally that pushed the stock to its highest price in about two decades.Selling Alibaba shares to pay for a buyback, as Elliott has proposed, could be a point of contention with Son. In the past, Son has used the shares as collateral to borrow money for big acquisitions, including the $32 billion purchase of chip designer ARM Holdings. Son said last week during a quarterly financial briefing that he’d prefer to sell as little as possible and that there’s “no rush” to do so.SoftBank said on Wednesday it plans to borrow as much as $4.5 billion against shares of its Japanese telecom unit. The company, which had 3.8 trillion yen of cash and equivalents at the end of December, said it was raising capital for operations. SoftBank’s debt load exceeds $120 billion.Son’s reliance on debt is raising alarms, said Tang, the financial analyst. “He’s going to get wiped out if there is some black swan event,” Tang said. “SoftBank needs to de-leverage, and the best way to do it is to sell the Alibaba stake.”Elliott has a tradition of using strong-arm tactics to get its way with target companies, but there’s little chance of that happening with SoftBank. Elliott’s stake enables it to call an emergency shareholder meeting, but pushing through a proposal without the founder’s backing is a long shot. Son, who often goes by the nickname Masa, controls more than a quarter of SoftBank stock through various vehicles, and the company bylaws require two-thirds of votes to pass any proposal made through the board, according to a person with knowledge of the rules.“Unless everyone is against him,” said Tang, “it’s not possible to dislodge Masa.”(Updates with share action in the seventh paragraph)\--With assistance from Scott Deveau.To contact the reporters on this story: Pavel Alpeyev in Tokyo at palpeyev@bloomberg.net;Giles Turner in London at gturner35@bloomberg.net;Takahiko Hyuga in Tokyo at thyuga@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Peter Elstrom at pelstrom@bloomberg.net, Mark Milian, Colum MurphyFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Masa and His Bankers Grab a Shared Ride
    Bloomberg

    Masa and His Bankers Grab a Shared Ride

    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. is investing more than $700 million in Southeast Asian ride-hailing giant Grab. It’s a three-way deal in which everyone gets what they currently lack.The Japanese megabank and the Singapore-headquartered “superapp,” a one-stop online shop spanning food to finance, get to plug gaps in their businesses. They also keep one of Grab’s existing backers sweet: Softbank Group Corp.’s founder Masayoshi Son will avoid the possibility of an inconvenient cash call from one of his most promising unicorns.It's no secret that Japanese banks are under pressure to expand overseas as negative interest rates bite at home. Fast-growing Southeast Asia offers an alternative. But there's a catch. Consumer spending in countries like Indonesia, where MUFG owns PT Bank Danamon, is going digital very rapidly — the region’s internet economy is expected to triple to $300 billion by 2025. That’s a lucrative pie for all banks and fintech firms. However, Japan’s banks aren’t exactly known for their digital spurs. Backing Grab gives the biggest Japanese lender a chance to earn them. MUFG intends to market a range of financial services from insurance to loans to Grab’s users, Taiga Uranaka of Bloomberg News reported Wednesday. What’s in it for Grab? After acquiring  Uber Technologies Inc.’s Southeast Asian operations two years ago, Grab is transforming itself from a ride-hailing service into an umbrella app with finance at its core. It hopes to pick up an online-only banking license in Singapore this summer. That alone will require Grab and its partner Singapore Telecommunications Ltd. to bring S$1.5 billion ($1.1 billion) in capital. Expanding the model elsewhere will be tricky if the unicorn relies too much on SoftBank and its Vision Fund, which it tapped for $1.5 billion last year.Enter MUFG, which has plenty of capital to underwrite credit risk in Indonesia, Thailand and the Philippines — countries where it already controls local retail banks. Those units can score borrowers looking for loans on the Grab app, as well as put up the actual funding. Having the regional network of a deep-pocketed Japanese institution in its corner should help Grab compete better against rival superapp Gojek, which has allied itself with Singapore's largest lender, DBS Group Holdings Ltd.(1)As for SoftBank, there must be huge sighs of relief all around. A core startup in its $100 billion Vision Fund’s portfolio won’t be relying on it for more cash. That’s one less mouth to feed in the wake of disastrous bets like office-sharing group WeWork — on which SoftBank took a $4.6 billion writedown — and dog-walking app Wag. SoftBank last week reported a 99% slump in operating profit for the quarter ended Dec. 31, and unveiled plans Thursday to borrow as much as 500 billion yen ($4.5 billion) by putting up shares of its Japanese telecom unit as collateral. Amid widening losses and mass layoffs at Oyo Hotels and Homes, a big SoftBank bet in India, funding Grab’s ambitious expansion is probably beyond Son’s present reach. And Grab must know that constraint.Yet, as Morningstar Inc. analyst Michael Makdad puts it, SoftBank is one of the biggest corporate borrowers for Japanese banks, one no large lender can afford to ignore or annoy. Writing a check for Grab gives MUFG a welcome chance to iron out any wrinkles from last year when it reportedly balked at contributing to a rescue package for WeWork. Learning new digital banking skills it can bring to its home market will be a bonus. Grab has plenty of room for Masa and his bankers to share the ride. (1) Interestingly, MUFG's leasing affiliate invested an undisclosed sum in Gojek last year.To contact the authors of this story: Nisha Gopalan at ngopalan3@bloomberg.netAndy Mukherjee at amukherjee@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Matthew Brooker at mbrooker1@bloomberg.netThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg LP and its owners.Nisha Gopalan is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering deals and banking. She previously worked for the Wall Street Journal and Dow Jones as an editor and a reporter.Andy Mukherjee is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering industrial companies and financial services. He previously was a columnist for Reuters Breakingviews. He has also worked for the Straits Times, ET NOW and Bloomberg News.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinionSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • SoftBank Climbs on Plan to Borrow $4.5 Billion Via Telecom Stock
    Bloomberg

    SoftBank Climbs on Plan to Borrow $4.5 Billion Via Telecom Stock

    (Bloomberg) -- SoftBank Group Corp.’s stock climbed after it unveiled plans to borrow as much as 500 billion yen ($4.5 billion) by putting up shares of its Japanese telecom unit as collateral, raising capital for the investment giant’s operations.The money for the two-year loan, which will have a one-year extension option, will come from 16 financial institutions, SoftBank said in a statement. It pledged as much as 953 million shares of SoftBank Corp. and said the money will be used to fund operations. SoftBank Group’s stock rose as much as 3.6% in Tokyo, while the unit’s was little changed.Activist investor Paul Singer this month revealed his firm had acquired a stake of as much as $3 billion in SoftBank and has advocated for a share buyback of as much as $20 billion, along with governance changes and more transparency about its investments. SoftBank founder Masayoshi Son called Singer’s Elliott Management Corp. an “important partner” and said he is in broad agreement with the investor about SoftBank buybacks and share value.SoftBank will need to raise cash to meet those demands. Son is adopting a more conciliatory stance just as he’s struggling with the $100 billion Vision Fund, which made him the biggest investor in technology. The fund lost money in the three months ended in December, one quarter after the meltdown at WeWork triggered a record loss for the Japanese company. Son is trying to raise capital for a second fund, but last week said he is no longer targeting $108 billion and SoftBank may finance the effort on its own.“We sense that the stars are now aligned for the firm to conduct a buyback,” Citigroup Global Markets analyst Mitsunobu Tsuruo wrote. SoftBank “will be in a position to flexibly implement a buyback amounting to” about 5% of its market capitalization.Read more: SoftBank’s Son Considers a ‘Bridge’ Fund Before Vision Fund 2The past 12 months have been tumultuous for Son and SoftBank. A year ago, the company unveiled a record buyback, sparking a rally that pushed shares to the highest since its dot-com peak in 2000. Uber Technologies Inc.’s disappointing public debut and the implosion of WeWork wiped out the gains over the next few months. But SoftBank surged again this month after Singer disclosed his stake and Son won approval to sell his Sprint Corp. to T-Mobile US Inc.SoftBank has 13.75 trillion yen of interest-bearing debt, with more than 2.6 trillion yen of bonds coming due in the next three years. The company also had 3.8 trillion yen of cash and equivalents as of the end of December.To contact the reporter on this story: Pavel Alpeyev in Tokyo at palpeyev@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Peter Elstrom at pelstrom@bloomberg.net, Edwin Chan, Colum MurphyFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Fortress Said to Increase Offer to Purchase Mt. Gox Claims
    Bloomberg

    Fortress Said to Increase Offer to Purchase Mt. Gox Claims

    (Bloomberg) -- Fortress Investment Group LLC increased its offer to purchase creditor claims from the defunct Mt. Gox cryptocurrency exchange in the wake of this year’s Bitcoin rally.The private-equity and hedge-fund firm sent letters this week to creditors offering $1,300 per Bitcoin, or 88% of its estimated account value, according to the one-page proposal, which Bloomberg News obtained from a person who said they weren’t authorized to speak on the matter. In December, the firm offered $755, and when Bitcoin traded lower, it dropped the price to as little as $600 per Bitcoin last March.Based in Japan, Mt. Gox was once the world’s biggest Bitcoin exchange, until it closed in early 2014 after losing the coins of thousands of customers. Thousands of Bitcoins have since been found, and a trustee is working to reimburse creditors. The reimbursement is being delayed by lawsuits.Michael Hourigan, a managing director at Fortress, said in the letter that firm is making the discount offer “due to the likely timeline (3 to 5 years) and financial risk of the ongoing litigations” involved in getting money from Mt. Gox.Bitcoin has rallied about 40% since the beginning of the year to cross $10,000.To contact the reporter on this story: Olga Kharif in Portland at okharif@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jeremy Herron at jherron8@bloomberg.net, Dave Liedtka, Rita NazarethFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • Japan’s Largest Bank Invests Over $700 Million in Grab
    Bloomberg

    Japan’s Largest Bank Invests Over $700 Million in Grab

    (Bloomberg) -- Japan’s Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc. is investing more than $700 million in Southeast Asian ride-hailing giant Grab, gaining access to millions across the region that use the mobile app to book cars and meals.The Japanese financial institution intends to market a range of financial services from insurance to loans to Grab’s users, said a person familiar with the deal who was not authorized to discuss the matter publicly.Grab, one of several ride-hailing giants backed by SoftBank Group Corp., is trying to build a regional super-app that offers a range of services including finance, payments and rides. The startup, one of Southeast Asia’s largest, doesn’t disclose its number of users -- which include many for food delivery -- but said its app has been downloaded onto more than 166 million mobile devices in the region. The car-hailing giant, which has taken in more than $2.6 billion from SoftBank alone, is on the hunt for more capital as it builds out and markets new services.MUFG and Grab intend to announce their alliance soon, the Nikkei reported earlier, citing unidentified people. A Grab representative had no immediate comment when contacted.Japan’s most valuable lender has been trying to build up its franchise in Southeast Asia, which it sees as an important growth driver to offset a slowing domestic market. Last year, the lender completed the takeover of PT Bank Danamon Indonesia. Incoming Chief Executive Officer Hironori Kamezawa, who was named to the top post last month, is now leading the bank’s digital efforts.Earlier this month, MUFG posted its first quarterly loss in a decade and cut its annual profit forecast after booking a hefty charge on the Indonesian acquisition. Lending profitability is under pressure as Japan heads into its fifth year of negative interest rates. Even so, MUFG’s rivals Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group Inc. and Mizuho Financial Group Inc. eked out higher profits last quarter after seeing gains from lending income.MUFG Posts First Quarterly Loss in Decade on Danamon Charge (1)(Updates with details on MUFG from the fifth paragraph)\--With assistance from Yoolim Lee.To contact the reporter on this story: Taiga Uranaka in Tokyo at turanaka@bloomberg.netTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Candice Zachariahs at czachariahs2@bloomberg.net, Edwin Chan, Marcus WrightFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

  • SoftBank to borrow $4.5 billion pledging domestic telco's shares
    Reuters

    SoftBank to borrow $4.5 billion pledging domestic telco's shares

    SoftBank Group Corp said on Wednesday it plans to borrow up to 500 billion yen ($4.5 billion) from 16 domestic and foreign financial institutions using almost a third of its stake in telco SoftBank Corp as collateral. The loan, which a company spokeswoman said will be used to boost the group's cash on hand and for general business purposes, comes as SoftBank's finances are under pressure on multiple fronts. SoftBank is offering a 20% stake in the telco as collateral for the two-year loan with an option to extend for a further year.

  • SoftBank-backed South Korean ride-hailer Tada gets rare win amid crackdown
    Reuters

    SoftBank-backed South Korean ride-hailer Tada gets rare win amid crackdown

    South Korea's ride-hailing service Tada, a smash hit since its launch just over a year ago, was cleared of transport law violations in court on Wednesday, a rare victory in a market that has been particularly unkind to ride-hailing companies. Since starting up in late 2018, Tada has won 1.7 million users as it capitalised on growing demand and the funding muscle of its Japanese backer SoftBank Group Corp . South Korea restricts ride-hailing to only licenced taxis and bans the use of private cars for the purpose.

  • SoftBank spends $2.5 billion to get second Vision Fund off the ground: sources
    Reuters

    SoftBank spends $2.5 billion to get second Vision Fund off the ground: sources

    The Japanese technology conglomerate is also considering investing another $2.5 billion of its own money, one of the people said. SoftBank Chief Executive Masayoshi Son said last week the company may spend up to two years investing its own money in a bridge fund, to build a portfolio that will give investors enough confidence to participate in a second Vision Fund. To that end, he said SoftBank has already invested "billions" of U.S. dollars, but he did not provide an exact figure.

  • SoftBank spends $2.5 billion to get second Vision Fund off the ground - sources
    Reuters

    SoftBank spends $2.5 billion to get second Vision Fund off the ground - sources

    The Japanese technology conglomerate is also considering investing another $2.5 billion of its own money, one of the people said. SoftBank Chief Executive Masayoshi Son said last week the company may spend up to two years investing its own money in a bridge fund, to build a portfolio that will give investors enough confidence to participate in a second Vision Fund. To that end, he said SoftBank has already invested "billions" of U.S. dollars, but he did not provide an exact figure.

  • SoftBank's Latest Fund Wheeze Sets Off New Alarms
    Bloomberg

    SoftBank's Latest Fund Wheeze Sets Off New Alarms

    (Bloomberg Opinion) -- SoftBank Group Corp. became vulnerable to activist attack by Elliott Management Corp. because of the harmful noise generated by the Japanese technology investor’s giant Vision Fund. That noise just won’t die down.Sunday brought a report in the Financial Times that Vision Fund head Rajeev Misra is looking to raise a multi-billion dollar fund to buy listed stocks. The blueprint was established last year with SoftBank’s investment in controversial German payments company Wirecard AG via a convertible bond. The new plan looks like a bid to do more unconventional equity investments in the same vein.The development marks a strategic departure. After all, the $100 billion Vision Fund was established to take stakes in private, tech-focused startups. SoftBank has already had to deny that there’s a “misalignment” between Misra and the group’s founder and Chief Executive Officer Masayoshi Son over the idea of investing more in public companies. But it’s not hard to see why Son, and other SoftBank shareholders, might need persuading.Setting up a listed-equity vehicle would bring in new revenues from management and performance fees. It could also create capital gains (or losses) from any investments in the fund that are made using SoftBank’s own capital. Whether it would make such commitments — and the decision-making around any such moves — is unclear. The FT said funding of about $4 billion is being lined up from sovereign funds in Abu Dhabi and Kazakhstan.There is some logic to Misra’s idea. It would, theoretically, marry SoftBank’s nous in emerging technology with the experience in trading and structured products possessed by a bunch of former bankers working for the Vision Fund. The result could bring a new dimension to SoftBank, similar to how the American buyout giants have become purveyors of real-estate, private-equity and credit strategies.The numbers being spoken of may be small relatively. But SoftBank’s core competence is in a specific sector, technology, and a specific category, late-stage venture capital. It needs to be crystal clear about why it would have an edge in the listed markets. The new offshoot would engage in financial engineering by wrapping listed investments in leveraged structures. But would it be looking to hire people or engage advisers with that expertise in a public-equity strategy if it didn’t already have it on the payroll? Or is the tail wagging the dog?SoftBank shares trade at a near 60% discount to net asset value, hence Elliott’s interest. That’s due largely to high-profile mishaps in the Vision Fund, such as WeWork, even though the fund still accounts for only a 10% slice of SoftBank’s overall managed assets. The risk is that, as with the Vision Fund, this venture has an outsized impact on sentiment toward SoftBank overall.Ironically, SoftBank has a huge opportunity already to dabble in the stock market and do financial engineering. The discount at which its shares trade means it could buy nearly $50 billion of underlying investments by spending $20 billion on its own stock. Son could fund such a buyback either by raising debt or selling some of SoftBank’s shares in Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., Sprint Corp., telecoms subsidiary SoftBank Corp. or even chipmaker Arm Holdings via a public offering. Maybe the brains in the Vision Fund could start by identifying which of these levers to pull.To contact the author of this story: Chris Hughes at chughes89@bloomberg.netTo contact the editor responsible for this story: James Boxell at jboxell@bloomberg.netThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of Bloomberg LP and its owners.Chris Hughes is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering deals. He previously worked for Reuters Breakingviews, as well as the Financial Times and the Independent newspaper.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinionSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

By using Yahoo, you agree that we and our partners can use cookies for purposes such as customising content and advertising. See our Privacy Policy to learn more