World

SoftBank succeeds in tender offer for Uber shares

A consortium led by SoftBank Group will buy a large number of shares of Uber Technologies in a deal that values the ride-services firm at US$48 billion (S$64.1 billion), Uber said on Thursday, in a victory for new chief executive Dara Khosrowshahi.

The price is a roughly 30 per cent discount to Uber's most recent valuation of US$68 billion.

The deal will trigger a number of changes in the way the board oversees the company, which is dealing with federal criminal probes, a high-stakes lawsuit and an overhaul of its workplace culture.

SoftBank and the rest of the consortium will own approximately 17.5 per cent of Uber, a person familiar with the matter said.

It includes a share purchase, through a tender offer, from earlier investors and employees at the US$48 billion valuation, as well as a US$1.25 billion investment of fresh funding at the US$68 billion level.

Uber said the deal will close early next year. On Thursday, it said that existing investors had agreed to sell enough shares for SoftBank to go through with the transaction.

SoftBank itself will keep a 15 per cent stake, while the rest of the consortium will own approximately 3 per cent, according to a second person familiar with the matter. - REUTERS

BUSINESS & FINANCE