Published: Tue, November 14, 2017
Business | By Max Garcia

SoftBank may not invest in Uber if deal not sweet enough

Uber Technologies has made a decision to accept the investment proposal led by Japanese tech conglomerate SoftBank to pick up majority stake, bringing months-long negotiations to a close, according to latest news reports.

Japanese multinational telecommunications and Internet firm SoftBank Group said in a statement that although it is considering investing into the ride-hailing company, Uber Technologies, there was "no final agreement". The agreement will not only give SoftBank a major stake in Uber - it is looking to buy up at least 14 per cent of the company - but it will help put a rest to one of the many ongoing battles for new CEO Dara Khosrowshahi. People from SoftBank did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Uber has suffered a tumultuous few months which has seen former CEO and co-founder Travis Kalanick forced out after a series of boardroom controversies and other regulatory battles in multiple US states and around the world.

"The Uber board and its shareholders, as well as the SoftBank Group side, have come to a basic agreement on a process for the SoftBank Group to make a future investment in Uber". A source with knowledge of the matter said that the deal comes with a resolution to have an initial public offering by 2019.

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SoftBank plans to purchase the Uber shares along with other investors, including Dragoneer, an investment firm. SoftBank is also expected to appoint two directors to the board and participate in management.

Kohli was mostly tasked with building Uber's relations with regulators and government officials in India, a market where the firm has faced several regulatory and reputational hurdles. It operates in about 30 Indian cities and competes with Ola, a ride hailing service backed by Japan's Softbank. Both companies have pumped in millions of dollars towards rider discounts and driver incentives.

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