SoftBank to explore OSIsoft stake sale soon


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  • Thursday, 28 May 2020

NEW YORK: SoftBank Group Corp is exploring a sale of a minority stake in OSIsoft LLC that could be worth more than US$1.5bil, according to people familiar with the matter.

SoftBank is working with a financial adviser to sell the stake in the industrial software company, which is held by its Vision Fund, said the people, who asked to not be identified because the matter isn’t public. The move is part of SoftBank’s new focus on raising cash, they said.

The Japanese firm’s plans aren’t final and it could opt to keep the stake, the people said.

Representatives for the Vision Fund and OSIsoft declined to comment.

SoftBank chief executive officer Masayoshi Son has said he would sell off about US$42bil in assets to finance stock buybacks and pay down debt.

SoftBank disclosed it’s selling shares in Alibaba Group Holding Ltd and it’s in talks to sell about US$20bil of T-Mobile US Inc, Bloomberg News reported.

SoftBank’s Vision Fund has unwound some investments, including dumping its entire stake in chipmaker Nvidia Corp in February 2019.

The fund, which has made bets on companies like WeWork that have cratered, sold a nearly 50% stake in dog walking startup Wag Labs back to the company last year.

San Leandro-California based OSIsoft sells software into sectors including oil and gas, utilities and pharmaceutical development, according to its website.

SoftBank acquired a “significant minority stake” in the company in 2017 from backers including Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and TCV, according to a statement. Its investment was worth a bit less than US$1bil, a person familiar with the matter said at the time. — Bloomberg

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