27 Facts About SoftBank


SoftBank was ranked in the 2017 Forbes Global 2000 list as the 36th largest public company in the world and the second-largest publicly traded company in Japan after Toyota.

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Logo of SoftBank is based on the flag of the Kaientai, a naval trading company founded in 1865, near the end of the Tokugawa shogunate, by Sakamoto Ryoma.

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SoftBank was founded in September 1981 as a SOFTBANK Corp by then-24-year-old Masayoshi Son, initially as a software distributor.

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In September 1995, SoftBank agreed to purchase US-based Ziff Davis publishing for $2.

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SoftBank bought COMDEX from The Interface Group on 1 April 1995 for $800 million and ZDI on 29 February 1996.

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SoftBank sold COMDEX to Key3Media, a spin-off of Ziff Davis, in 2001.

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On 28 January 2005, SoftBank became the owner of the Fukuoka SoftBank Hawks, a Nippon Professional Baseball team.

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On 17 March 2006, SoftBank announced its agreement to buy Vodafone Japan, giving it a stake in Japan's $78 billion mobile markets.

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On 1 July 2013, SoftBank announced that Willcom was a wholly-owned subsidiary, after the termination of rehabilitation proceedings.

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In June 2015, SoftBank announced it would invest US$1 billion in the Korean e-commerce website Coupang as part of its overseas expansion plans.

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Meanwhile, SoftBank Mobile was renamed to SoftBank Corp, the now-former name of the company as a whole.

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On 6 December 2016, after meeting with US President-elect Donald Trump, chief executive Masayoshi Son announced SoftBank would be investing US$50 billion in the United States toward businesses creating 50, 000 new jobs.

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On 30 January 2017, the Wall Street Journal wrote that SoftBank Group was "weighing an investment of well over $1 billion in shared-office space company WeWork, in what could be among the first deals from its new $100 billion technology fund.

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On 14 February 2017, SoftBank Group agreed to buy Fortress Investment Group LLC for $3.

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In July 2019, SoftBank announced creating of a "Vision Fund 2", excluding participation from the Saudi Arabia government and including investors Apple, Foxconn, Microsoft and others.

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In November 2018, SoftBank announced it would make an IPO with the cost of share of $13.

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In December 2018, SoftBank announced its intention to invest $1 billion on ride-hailing startup Grab.

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The effort was initiated by Son in order to stem a collapse in the company's share price due to the pandemic, "This programme will be the largest share buyback and will result in the largest increase in cash balance in the history of SBG [SoftBank Group], reflecting the firm and unwavering confidence we have in our business.

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In July 2020, SoftBank announced that it is considering to sell or IPO British chip designer Arm Holdings, which has been in a feud with the Chinese over control of its local subsidiary, but it did not have the majority ownership due to a decision made by Softbank to sell off the stake to the local partner.

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That month SoftBank sold Brightstar Corporation to Brightstar Capital Partners for an undisclosed amount.

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American chip designing company Nvidia announced plans on 13 September 2020 to acquire ARM from SoftBank, pending regulatory approval, for a value of US $40 billion in stock and cash, became the largest semiconductor acquisition to date.

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In January 2021, SoftBank sold $2 billion in Uber Technologies shares through affiliate firm SB Cayman.

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In 2010, SoftBank founded Wireless City Planning, a subsidiary that planned the development of TD-LTE networks throughout Japan.

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SoftBank operates in the eco-power industry through its SB Energy subsidiary.

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On 4 June 2008, SoftBank Mobile announced a partnership with Apple and brought the iPhone to Japan later in 2008.

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SoftBank Mobile was the only official carrier of the iPhone in Japan until the release of iPhone 4S in 2011, when au by KDDI began to offer it.

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SoftBank partnered with the Ingress augmented reality game, supporting the branded "SoftBank Ultra Link" in-game item.

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