SoftBank acquires a 20 percent stake in Uber

Sean O’Kane, writing for the Verge;

Japanese tech giant SoftBank Group has bought a 20 percent stake in Uber, completing a months-long process, according to the Wall Street Journal. The move drops Uber’s value by about 30 percent from around $70 billion to $48 billion — a reflection of the trouble that the ride-hailing company has experienced across 2017.

Softbank will soon own a piece of every tech company in silicon valley. 🙂

SoundCloud Is Close to Sale of Stakes to Raine, Temasek

Lucas Shaw, reporting for Bloomberg;

SoundCloud Ltd. is close to selling stakes to the Raine Group and Temasek Holdings, deals that would help stabilize the owner of the popular music-streaming service, according to people familiar with the matter.

The deal with Raine, a boutique bank that invested in Vice Media Inc. and advised Softbank Group Corp. on its acquisition of Sprint Corp., could close by the end of this week, said the people, who asked not to be identified discussing private negotiations. Temasek is Singapore’s state investment firm.

Didi and Softbank to invest $2b in Grab; round may reach $2.5b

Judith Balea, reporting for Tech in Asia;

Southeast Asia’s leading transportation app Grab has new ammunition to battle rivals Uber and Go-Jek. The Singapore-headquartered company announced today that its two largest shareholders – China’s Didi Chuxing and Masayoshi Son-led Softbank – are investing up to US$2 billion to lead its current funding round.

Grab expects to raise an additional US$500 million from existing and new investors, bringing the round’s total to US$2.5 billion. Jack Ma’s Alibaba was supposedly eyeing to join in.

That’s one massive funding. This could threaten Uber’s growth in the region.

Manufacturing giant Foxconn is taking over SoftBank’s investment fund in Asia

Jon Russell, reporting for TechCrunch;

Foxconn is taking over SoftBank’s Asia-based tech investment fund. The manufacturing giant, which is responsible for producing Apple’s iPhone among many other tech products, has agreed to buy a majority 54.5 percent stake in SoftBank Asia Capital in exchange for $600 million, according to a filing.

The deal is scheduled to go through March 1, after which time SoftBank Asia Capital will no longer be a SoftBank affiliate. A SoftBank representative confirmed that the agreement will see Foxconn become “the decision maker on investments” for the fund.

Ola gets $330m from SoftBank, but valuation plummets to $3.5b

DurbaDurba Ghosh, writing for Tech in Asia;

India’s Uber arch-rival Ola has once again won backing from Japan’s SoftBank, with fresh funding of US$330 million, a person familiar with the details of the deal told Tech in Asia.

However, the fresh funding comes at a cost. Ola’s valuation has dropped by more than 30 percent to US$3.5 billion, Business Standard reported today. Ola’s valuation drop is indicative of declining investor confidence in India.

It’s high time for Ola to expand to other markets and not just their home country.