Customers can be seen inside the Apple store in central Sydney, Australia, in this picture taken March 18, 2016. Picture taken March 18, 2016. REUTERS/David Gray/File Photo – RTSTQWB

Apple to invest $1 bn in SoftBank Vision Fund

3 months ago

Apple Inc. is investing $1 billion in SoftBank Corp’s $100-billion tech fund, according to a report in a major international daily.

The fund, called SoftBank Vision Fund, is also expected to witness participation from Foxconn Technology Group Ltd and the family office of Larry Ellison, chairman of Oracle Corp, The Wall Street Journal said.

SoftBank Vision Fund will become the Japanese investor’s primary investment vehicle in India, and all its future investments in the country will be made through it, according to a report in The Economic Times on Friday. All follow-on investments in SoftBank’s current Indian portfolio, including online grocery marketplace Grofers, e-commerce firm Snapdeal, ride-hailing app Ola and accommodation startup Oyo Rooms, will also be made from the new fund. Delhi will be one of the fund’s global hubs, ET added. 

The fund is likely to close by January end, and has also attracted investment from the sovereign wealth fund of Abu Dhabi, said a report in the Mint newspaper. 

SoftBank had launched the fund in October 2016, in strategic partnership with a sovereign wealth fund, Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia. While SoftBank would pool in $25 billion, the sovereign wealth fund was supposed to chip in with $45 billion. The rest was to be raised from other investors. The fund intends to make investments in the technology sector globally and aims to be one of the world’s largest of its kind.

SoftBank named India-born Rajeev Misra as head of the ambitious $100-billion fund, which could be good news for SoftBank’s Indian portfolio companies such as Snapdeal, Ola, Grofers, Housing, Hike and InMobi. Some of these firms have been facing a fund crunch, with SoftBank tightening its purse strings of late.

In December, SoftBank chairman and managing director Masayoshi Son, who was on a visit to India, reiterated that he continues to be bullish on India and believes he will surpass his own commitment of investing $10 billion in India over 10 years. A large part of this capital is expected to come from the $100-billion fund. Overall, SoftBank has invested nearly $2.8 billion in India so far, according to VCCEdge, the data research arm of News Corp VCCircle.

“We believe their new fund will speed the development of technologies which may be strategically important to Apple,” Apple spokeswoman Kristin Huguet told The Wall Street Journal.

US-headquartered chipmaker Qualcomm Inc is also expected to invest in the fund, although the quantum of investment it will make is not known yet.

“With the establishment of the SoftBank Vision Fund, we will be able to step up investments in technology companies globally. Over the next decade, SoftBank Vision Fund will be the biggest investor in the technology sector,” Son had said at the time of the announcement of the fund.

A little over a year ago, SoftBank said it was winding down its venture capital division SoftBank Capital. The move signalled that the Tokyo-headquartered company will no longer make small bets in early-stage companies and instead focus on bigger investments in more mature businesses.

This article has been updated to include that the fund will become SoftBank’s key investment vehicle in India and that it is likely to close by January end.

Like this report? Sign up for our daily newsletter to get our top reports.


View Comments
True Balance raises $15 mn from SoftBank Ventures Korea, others

True Balance raises $15 mn from SoftBank Ventures Korea, others

Disha Sharma 4 weeks ago
Gurgaon-based startup True Balance, an app that allows users to check their mobile phone balance, has raised Rs 100 crore ($15 million) in a Series...
OYO may raise $500 mn from SoftBank, check into unicorn club

OYO may raise $500 mn from SoftBank, check into unicorn club

Varun Arora 4 weeks ago
Branded budget hotels marketplace OYO Rooms, run by Oravel Stays Pvt. Ltd, is in talks to raise $300-500 million (Rs 2,000-3,335 crore) from SoftBank Vision...
SoftBank joins hands with Saudi sovereign fund to create mammoth investment corpus

SoftBank joins hands with Saudi sovereign fund to create mammoth investment corpus

Dearton Thomas Hector 5 months ago
Japanese telecom and technology firm SoftBank Group Corp. said on Friday it will set up a global fund along with Saudi Arabian sovereign wealth fund...
No Comments

Apple to invest $1 bn in SoftBank Vision Fund

Powered by WordPress.com VIP