WeWork and VNPAY-affiliated SoftBank loses $2 billion in Vision Fund

February 12, 2020 | 20:14
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Japanese technology giant SoftBank Group Corporation, a shareholder of WeWork and VNLIFE (the parent firm of VNPAY), has reported $2.05 billion of loss in its Vision Fund’s investment activities.

This is a sign of continuing struggles with Softbank Group's startup investments one quarter after the Japanese firm posted a record quarterly loss, according to Bloomberg.

wework and vnpay affiliated softbank loses 2 billion in vision fund
Japanese technology giant SoftBank Group Corporation has reported concerning losses after several failed investments

SoftBank Vision Fund lost $2.05 billion during the three months ending in December 2019, the company said on February 12, 2020.

Undoubtedly, this loss adds more weigh on SoftBank to generate profit across the globe.

The fund is now in trouble, writing down its bets on WeWork and Uber facing problems in smaller startups including dog-walking app Wag, home-goods retailer Brandless, and robotic pizza maker Zume.

Last year, WeWork – one of the biggest US-based coworking space operators – has pulled out of its IPO in the US, causing widespread surprise.

Previously, VIR also looked into the company’s development strategy in the Vietnamese market and its impact on the country’s startup community.

In November 2019, SoftBank’s biggest investors put pressure on the tech conglomerate over its governance and for bad investments in its $100 billion investment fund.

wework and vnpay affiliated softbank loses 2 billion in vision fund
SoftBank Vision Fund invested in VNLIFE, the parent company of fintech VNPAY

Investors, including Capital Group, hedge fund Tiger Global Management LLC, and Southeastern Asset Management Inc., privately criticised the company over losses in the Vision Fund and governance issues, according to Wall Street Journal.

The investors also raised concerns over SoftBank’s plan to help raise cash for a second Vision Fund by lending billions of dollars to its own executives.

Previously, Vietnam-based firm VNLIFE’s representatives said that Japan-based Softbank Vision Fund and Singapore-based sovereign wealth fund GIC have committed to proposing investment deals of $200 million and $100 million, respectively, to further the growth of the firm.

VNLIFE is the parent company of fintech VNPAY, a Vietnamese digital payment firm established in 2007.

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