Uber Clears Multi-Billion Dollar Deal with Softbank

Uber has approved a multi-billion dollar deal with Japan’s SoftBank Group that could be worth up to $10 billion.

The massive capital injection would see SoftBank, Dragoneer Investment Group and General Atlantic investing $1 billion into Uber and SoftBank purchasing up to $9 billion in Uber stock from existing shareholders, Bloomberg reported.

The sale would represent 17 per cent of Uber’s shares. The ride-hailing company is currently valued at $70 billion.

“We’ve entered into an agreement with a consortium led by SoftBank and Dragoneer on a potential investment,” Uber said in a statement sent to media outlets. “We believe this agreement is a strong vote of confidence in Uber’s long-term potential.”

The deal has been in the works for months but was halted when venture firm Benchmark capital filed a lawsuit in August against Uber’s former CEO Travis Kalanick.

The major Uber shareholder wanted Kalanick removed from the company’s board of directors. Kalanick fired back by characterizing the lawsuit as a “public and personal attack,” rejecting the Benchmark suit in a court filing and calling for the dispute to be settled through arbitration.

That lawsuit has been set aside to seal the deal, according to Bloomberg, and would be dropped entirely when SoftBank’s investment is closed.

“Upon closing, it will help fuel our investments in technology and our continued expansion at home and abroad, while strengthening our corporate governance,” an Uber spokesperson said.

SoftBank’s purchase of Uber stock would mark one of the largest private startup deals.

The news of the multi-million dollar investment comes on the heels of Uber’s newly minted CEO Dara Khosrowshahi publicly announcing the company is planning for an IPO in 2019.