Uber sells 15% stake to SoftBank

Uber says This particular will go public in 2019

Uber can be finally getting its mini IPO.

SoftBank (SFTBF), the Japanese conglomerate, has reached a deal to invest more than $7 billion in Uber for a 15% stake inside ride-hailing startup, according to sources familiar with the deal.

The vast majority of which investment comes coming from SoftBank buying up shares held by existing Uber shareholders, including employees as well as also also earlier investors. SoftBank on Thursday completed a tender offer to buy those shares at a discounted valuation of $48 billion, according to sources.

SoftBank can be also investing $1.25 billion in brand new capital in Uber at its most recent $70 billion valuation. As sy88pgw has previously reported, This particular latter investment was contingent on SoftBank getting enough Uber insiders to sell for This particular to gain a stake of at least 14%.

Uber as well as also also SoftBank confirmed the completion of the tender offer Thursday. The overall transaction can be supposed to close in January.

“We look forward to working with the purchasers to close the overall transaction, which we expect to support our technology investments, fuel our growth, as well as also also strengthen our corporate governance,” Uber said in a statement.

Rajeev Misra, CEO of SoftBank Investment Advisers, said the firm was “appreciative of the support coming from Uber’s shareholders inside successful tender offer.”

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The blockbuster deal offers a cash infusion to Uber as well as also also its shareholders ahead of its actual public offering, which can be planned for 2019. This particular also paves the way for an overhaul of the company after a turbulent year, complete with criminal probes, a lawsuit over trade secrets allegedly stolen coming from Google (GOOGL)‘s self-driving car division as well as also also internal investigations into its toxic company culture.

The SoftBank investment was key to reforming Uber’s dysfunctional board as well as also also bringing a detente between warring factions: former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick as well as also also early Uber investor Benchmark.

As part of the deal, Kalanick agreed which he cannot fill the three board seats he controls inside future without majority approval by the board. Kalanick blindsided Uber in September by appointing two brand new members without notice.

Benchmark, in return, agreed to put on hold its lawsuit against Kalanick over his control of the three board seats, with plans to drop the case if as well as also also when the SoftBank deal closes.

To pave the way for the deal, Uber previously agreed to add six brand new seats to its board, two of which will go to SoftBank. Uber’s board also adopted a brand new voting system which will further lessen Kalanick’s influence.

Kalanick resigned as Uber CEO in June after months of crisis. Dara Khosrowshahi, the former CEO of Expedia (EXPE), took Kalanick’s place in August after a lengthy search.

SoftBank first publicly expressed interest about investing in Uber over the summer, while the startup was still looking for Kalanick’s replacement. although SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son had repeatedly teased the possibility — some might say threat — of investing in Lyft instead, including as recently as last month.

SoftBank has previously pumped billions into several ride-hailing companies abroad, including Didi in China, Grab in Southeast Asia as well as also also 99 in Brazil.

sy88pgw (brand new York) First published December 28, 2017: 6:31 PM ET

Uber sells 15% stake to SoftBank

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