SoftBank Vision Fund seen posting record earnings on Coupang

Platform News: Japan's SoftBank

SoftBank’s $100 billion Vision Fund is widely seen reporting record earnings on the 12th of May after portfolio companies listed during the quarter, mostly driven by gain on its stake in South Korean e-commerce giant Coupang.

SoftBank’s 37% stake in Coupang, which sources have said was acquired for about $3 billion, was worth around $30 billion at the end of the March quarter. Coupang shares have slipped 14% since March.

Gain on Coupang and investments like Uber Technologies are seen delivering a third quarter of growing profit for the fund, which pushed the group to a record loss last year as valuations fell at the beginning of the seemingly endless COVID-19 pandemic.

In response to media reports that SoftBank’s profit is to set a domestic record, the conglomerate said it would record gains but valuations were still being calculated.

Other big bets by SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son, including ride-hailing firms Grab and Didi, are also heading to public markets although analysts warn returns may not match the supersized Coupang gain.

Related Article:
Rakuten raided by anti-trust officials

“Upside for SoftBank is not as high as it was with those earlier investments,” said Kirk Boodry, an analyst at Redex Research, who sees the Vision Fund unit posting about $30 billion in quarterly gain.

The expected profit helps obscure Vision Fund missteps including investment in collapsed supply chain financier Greensill, and comes as companies like hotel chain Oyo grapple with a pandemic-induced downturn.

SoftBank’s gains are mostly unrealised and some observers see Grab’s record $40 billion merger with a blank-cheque company marking a peak for the investment vehicles amid concern over rich valuations for tech firms.

The team at Platform Executive hope you have enjoyed this news article. Translation from English to a growing list of other languages via Google AI Cloud Translation. Initial reporting via our official content partners at Thomson Reuters. Reporting by Sam Nussey. Editing by Tom Hogue and Stephen Coates.

Related Article:
Alibaba beats estimates as pandemic fuels online

Stay on top of all the latest developments across the platform economy and gain access to our problem-solving toolkit, proprietary databases and content sets by becoming a member of our community. For a limited time, subscription plans start from just $7 per month.

Share this article