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- SoftBank’s offer to purchase Uber shares from earlier investors and employees has succeeded.
- As part of the deal, SoftBank is expected to buy shares from employees and investors worth about 15% of the company and will invest an additional $1.25 billion directly into Uber.
- SoftBank offered $33 per Uber share. That price puts the company’s value at $48 billion, or about 30% less than the $69 billion valuation it had after its last funding round.
It’s official: SoftBank will own a big chunk of Uber.
The Japanese investment firm has succeeded in its big push to buy up around 15% of Uber at a 30% discount, the ride-sharing company confirms. As part of the deal, which the investment firm expects to close in January, SoftBank will also invest $1.25 billion directly into Uber.
“We are appreciative of the support from Uber’s shareholders in the successful tender offer,” Rajeev Misra, CEO of SoftBank Investment Advisers, said in a statement. He continued: “We have tremendous confidence in Uber’s leadership and employees and are excited to support Uber as it continues to reinvent how people and goods are transported around the world.”
Uber will use the SoftBank funding to invest in its technology, fund its growth and revamp its corporate governance, an Uber spokesman said in a statement.
“We look forward to working with the purchasers to close the overall transaction,” the Uber spokesperson said.
Earlier on Thursday, SoftBank made a so-called tender offer to Uber investors and shareholders, proposing to pay a reported $33 per share for their stock in the company. That price valued the app-based taxi company at around $48 billion, which was about 30% less than the $69 billion valuation it had after its most recent funding round.
With Uber’s initial public offering not expected to come before 2019 and the company having just experienced a rocky 2017 with massive ongoing losses, many early Uber investors have appeared eager to cash in some of their shares in what has become the world’s most valuable privately held tech startup. However some Uber investors were concerned the price SoftBank was offering was too low, according to Recode.
Uber’s corporate governance, set to be overhauled as part of the SoftBank deal, became a hot-button issue this year after the company saw a seemingly never ending string of crises and experienced the resignation of its cofounder and CEO Travis Kalanick. It’s not immediately clear when those reforms will be put in place.