News Article

SoftBank’s Vision Fund positioned in Uber IPO for major haul

SoftBank Group Corp.’s Vision Fund, the world’s biggest innovation investor, is expected to be a large victor this week at Uber Technologies Inc.’s blockbuster IPO, with a paper gain of about $3 billion in about 16 months.

Uber presently anticipates a value of about $80 billion and $90 billion when it starts trading Friday. When SoftBank entered into the business in early 2018, placing a $7.7 billion check for an approximately 15 percent share, Uber was recovering from a sequence of events and valued at about $48 billion. The Japanese company managed to earn about 25% below the cost paid by other shareholders who bought Uber stocks in 2016.

The large profit is one of the greatest triumphs for the $100 billion Vision Fund, initiated in spring 2017. It could help its aggressive development plans, including a feasible IPO of its present fund, and raise one of the same magnitude or bigger.

Others did better on Uber. Early companies like Benchmark, Menlo Ventures, First Round Capital, and Goldman Sachs Group Inc.— which spent both their own cash and on behalf of clients— scored large profits, sometimes making many of their initial investments years ago.

Either manner, the Vision Fund is set to be one of the large beneficiaries from what forms a record year for original government purchases. SoftBank’s approximately $300 million investment in Guardant Health Inc., made public in October 2018, is now more than six times that. The company is an investor in Slack Technologies Inc. and WeWork Cos., both preparing for large debuts in 2019.

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