Startups, rejoice: SoftBank is planning another $100B Vision Fund

The second fund will be the same size as the current one

May.May 09, 2019 09:00 AM
Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son (Credit: Getty Images and iStock)

Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son (Credit: Getty Images and iStock)

SoftBank, the biggest backer of unicorn real estate startups, is planning its second Saudi-backed $100 billion Vision Fund.

The second fund will be about the same size as the current one, the Wall Street Journal reported. Less than two years after the launch, the company has deployed most of its capital, investing in companies including Uber and WeWork.

SoftBank has been a major player in the venture capital scene, giving startups an option to avoid publicly listing their companies. The Vision Fund had a return on its investments of 29 percent as of March, the report said. Returns for SoftBank were 62 percent, including performance fees.

SoftBank has approached existing Vision Fund investors but plans to approach a broader group of potential investors.

A previous report noted that the Japanese conglomerate was in talks with investors to add another $15 billion to their already huge $100 billion Vision Fund, and were considering raising capital for a second fund. The company is also considering an initial public offering for the fund.

Since 2017, Masayoshi Son’s SoftBank has used its Vision Fund to invest $70 billion in technology start-ups, including office-leasing giant WeWork — now called the We Company — and brokerage Compass. Son previously stated that he aims to raise a new $100 billion fund every two or three years. [WSJ] — Meenal Vamburkar

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