Japan′s SoftBank may secure stake in Uber | Business| Economy and finance news from a German perspective | DW | 13.11.2017
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Japan's SoftBank may secure stake in Uber

Taxi-hailing company Uber has said it's struck a deal that may eventually lead to a massive investment in the company by a consortium led by Japanese conglomerate SoftBank and Dragoneer of San Francisco.

Ride-sharing company Uber announced a deal to sell a stake to Japan's SoftBank as the firm looked to turn a new page ahead of its planned IPO in 2019.

The move was unveiled shortly after reports emerged that its former CEO Travis Kalanick and an influential investor had buried the hatchet, paving the ways for the acquisition.

"We've entered into an agreement with the consortium led by SoftBank and Dragoneer [of San Francisco] on a potential investment, a statement from Uber said.

"We believe this agreement is a strong vote of confidence in Uber's long-term potential," it added.

Win-win situation?

Uber argued that once in the bag, the investment would help fuel its development in the tech sector and its continued expansion at home and abroad, "while strengthening our corporate governance."

A deal could indeed be positive for Uber which is looking ahead to the future in the wake of recent scandals, among them workplace harassment allegations.

Japanese conglomerate SoftBank has been diversifying through investment for several years and has ventured into sectors outside its core mobile technology business, completing deals with the likes of French robotics firm Aldebaran and Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba.

SoftBank is sending tremors through the tech world with its massive new Vision Fund, a venture capital fund intended for startups and expected to dominate the industry before long.

hg/jd (AFP, Reuters)

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