SoftBank reportedly offering to buy Uber shares at steep discount
Japan Times -- Nov 29
SoftBank Group Corp. and a group of investors are said to be trying to buy a big stake in Uber Technologies Inc. at a sizable discount to the ride-hailing company's $69 billion valuation, seeking to clinch what would be one of the largest ever purchases of stock in a private company.

SoftBank and partners including investment firms Dragoneer Investment Group and General Atlantic are offering to spend more than $6 billion for a stake that would value the ride-hailing company at $48 billion, or about 30 percent lower than the valuation it fetched in its most recent round of fundraising.

If it is successful, the SoftBank-led coalition would buy at least 14 percent of the shares from existing Uber investors. The share purchase, along with an additional $1 billion direct investment in the company, would make the group one of Uber's biggest shareholders, according to sources who asked not to be identified discussing the private terms.

The SoftBank coalition would receive two board seats if the stock sale is completed.

Locking in the investment from SoftBank has been a top priority for new Uber Chief Executive Officer Dara Khosrowshahi, who sees the deal as chance to close rifts and land a powerful new ally.

The share offer gives existing shareholders a way to sell equity and unlock some of the value that has been difficult to realize as long as the San Francisco-based company puts off an initial public offering. Khosrowshahi has said he expects to take Uber public by 2019.

The tender offer was expected to start Tuesday, the people said. While a number of Uber shareholders have agreed to sell shares, this part of the process could last as many as 20 business days, according to the sources.

News source: Japan Times
Dec 14
With staff getting harder to come by, nearly 60% of top executives at major Japanese companies are inclined to invest more in training and educating personnel in fiscal 2018, according to a Nikkei Inc. survey. (Nikkei)
Dec 11
Prosecutors investigating Obayashi Corp. suspect the major construction firm rigged a bid for the building of a maglev train station emergency exit, with one of the company's vice presidents brought in voluntarily for questioning about the matter, sources close to the case said Sunday. (Japan Times)
Dec 10
Online retail giant Rakuten wants to help drones navigate safely at a low altitude in Japan, with an eye on future autonomous delivery service. (NHK)
Dec 09
The Justice Ministry is considering relaxing a key requirement that non-Japanese planning to start businesses here must fulfill to obtain resident status in Japan. (Japan Times)
Dec 07
Japan's Supreme Court has ruled for the first time that an article in the country's Broadcast Law that obliges TV owners to sign receiving contracts with NHK does not violate the Constitution. (NHK)
Dec 02
Calendar, diary and fortune-telling businesses are anxiously awaiting the announcement of the name of Japan's next imperial era, as the government said Friday it is expected to begin on May 1, 2019, the day after the emperor abdicates. (Japan Today)
Nov 30
Tokyo Disney Resort operator Oriental Land plans a major expansion for the theme park, looking to spend over 300 billion yen ($2.68 billion) to build new attractions and ease congestion amid fierce competition in the industry. (Nikkei)
Nov 29
SoftBank Group Corp. and a group of investors are said to be trying to buy a big stake in Uber Technologies Inc. at a sizable discount to the ride-hailing company's $69 billion valuation, seeking to clinch what would be one of the largest ever purchases of stock in a private company. (Japan Times)
Nov 29
Rakuten will capitalize on the home-rental trend with a comprehensive support service for property owners, looking to distinguish itself from the more established Airbnb in a growing market set to emerge from a legal gray area. (Nikkei)
Nov 27
The price of Bitcoin topped 1 million yen, or nearly 9,000 US dollars, in Japan on Sunday. (NHK)