SoftBank to Raise $10.4 Billion in Sale of Wireless Unit Stockby Pavel Alpeyev, Takahiko Hyuga
- SoftBank Corp. shares priced at 1,204.50 yen in landmark sale
- The deal helps fill SoftBank warchest as pace of deals ramp up
SoftBank Group Corp. will raise about 1.2 trillion yen ($10.4 billion) from selling about a third of its domestic wireless arm, marking Japan’s biggest secondary share sale in a decade.
The Japanese firm said it will sell SoftBank Corp. shares at 1,204.50 yen apiece. Including an over-allotment option, the group will raise about $11.6 billion in total from the deal before fees, the largest sale of stock since 2009.
The transaction -- along with an envisioned sale of Arm Ltd. to Nvidia Corp. for as much as $40 billion -- helps refill SoftBank’s coffers during a frenzy of deals. SoftBank and its second Vision Fund have made recent investments around the globe and founder Masayoshi Son is mid-way through a record 2.5 trillion yen of stock repurchases, buoying the parent’s stock after investment missteps and fallout from the pandemic. Executives are also said be revisiting a plan to buy out public shareholders, which had earlier met with internal opposition.
Local and international investors are said to have liked the dividend yield at SoftBank Corp.’s latest price, which is lower than the initial public offering price of 1,500 yen in 2018. Nomura Holdings Inc. and Daiwa Securities Group Inc. are leading the distributions. Mizuho Financial Group Inc., Bank of America Corp. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. are also coordinators on the deal.
Son’s many asset sales have put him in the unusual position of having excess cash. Separate from the SoftBank Corp. and Nvidia deals, the parent company has offloaded $13.7 billion of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. stock and a stake in T-Mobile US Inc. for about $20 billion.
With all the money coming in, Son unveiled a new asset management arm that would invest in public securities. SoftBank Group later disclosed about $3.9 billion of investments into 25 of the world’s largest technology companies including Amazon.com Inc., Tesla Inc., Netflix Inc. and Alphabet Inc. SoftBank is now said to be considering revamping a controversial strategy of using derivatives to invest in tech companies, and its executives have met with investors in recent days to assure them that the bets are relatively conservative.