SoftBank’s Vision Fund to unveil blank-check company

Masayoshi Son’s company will use its own capital and outside funds for SPAC venture

National /
Oct.October 13, 2020 09:30 AM
SoftBank Group’s Vision Fund CEO Rajeev Misra (Getty; iStock)

SoftBank Group’s Vision Fund CEO Rajeev Misra (Getty; iStock)

SoftBank Group’s Vision Fund will lay out plans to launch a blank-check company in the next two weeks, becoming the latest high-profile group looking to raise money from a special-purpose acquisition company.

SoftBank has not announced the target size of the blank check company, Bloomberg News reported. It plans to seek outside funding along with contributing its own capital for the venture.

The blank-check company will combine the Vision Fund’s work investing in tech startups with SoftBank’s recent focus on public stock trading, according to Bloomberg.

The Vision Fund invested heavily in startups in recent years, but has become perhaps most well known for pouring money into WeWork.

Blank-check companies, or special-purpose acquisition companies (SPACs), are becoming an increasingly popular way to raise capital. For example, Spencer Rascoff, the co-founder of Zillow and Hotwire, is co-chairing a SPAC to invest in a tech unicorn and take it public.

In an interview with Bloomberg, Rajeev Misra, the head of the Vision Fund, rejected the idea that a blank-check firm is the “Nasdaq whale,” pumping up valuations for tech stocks.

“Are we buying a few billion of other stocks to diversify away from the Alibaba we sold in the past six months?” Misra said to Bloomberg. “We’re still sitting on a lot of cash. It’s a liquidity-management strategy, it’s a diversification strategy.”

[Bloomberg News] — Keith Larsen


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