Uber's valuation could be significantly slashed after SoftBank deal

Travis Kalanick whose departure from Uber showed the cost of a toxic company culture

Travis Kalanick whose departure from Uber showed the cost of a toxic company culture

Uber's shareholders have agreed to sell a 20pc stake to an investor group led by SoftBank, according to The Wall Street Journal, crossing the threshold needed for the deal to complete.

Uber investors and employees tendered shares equal to 20 percent of the company.

The shake-up was supported by Uber's new chief executive Dara Khosrowshahi, who has said he hopes to list Uber's shares publicly in 2019.

But the discount is a humbling coda on a rough year for Uber, which has been rocked by a series of scandals, from claims of sexual harassment to revelations of a program meant to deceive law enforcement.




Uber now has a powerful strategic partner in SoftBank, the Japanese telecom giant that is investing hundreds of billions of dollars in technology.

The price offered for the shares valued the firm at $48bn and was a discount to Uber's most recent fundraising round, but for some of the firm's earliest investors could provide a big payoff. The tender offer period concluded on Thursday. Softbank will limit its stake to 15 percent, valuing Uber at a 30 percent discount of its most recent valuation of almost $70 billion. SoftBank and its co-investors are acquiring some of the company at a valuation of $48 billion.

The Journal further reports that SoftBank will receive two seats on Uber's board of directors. And in a maneuver to prop up Uber's value, SoftBank will also purchase up to $1.25 billion worth of new shares at the existing valuation of $67.5 billion. SoftBank has access to all kinds of technology that could be relevant to Uber's self-driving vehicle plans via its other investments, and with its help, Uber will be better positioned to expand into Asia.

Rajeev Misra, chief executive of SoftBank's Vision Fund, a tech investment vehicle, will be nominated to the Uber board, the Journal reported.

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