June 14, 2023: SoftBank Group Corp is conditioning a renewed set to remove people at its Vision Fund investment arm, two individuals known with the matter said, the current cost-slashing move at the Japanese conglomerate.
The layoffs, which could be announced in the coming two weeks, may impact up to 30% of its staff at the unit, including employees in the U.S., one of the people added. According to the report, SoftBank’s Vision Fund unit, which has secured heavy investment losses, had a headcount of 349 at the end of March.
The sources declined to be identified as the information was confidential. SoftBank refused to remark.
If finalized, this would follow the elimination of approximately 150 jobs globally at the investing arm and SoftBank Group International in September.
SoftBank, an assertive investor in tech companies such as fintech giant Klarna and TikTok owner ByteDance, has seen the valuation of its portfolio drop between sharp interest pace hikes and increasing U.S.-China tensions.
The group wrote an annual net loss of 970 billion yen for the year ended March 31. It eased the investment loss at the Vision Fund unit by selling down its stake in Alibaba Group Holding Ltd.
Vision Fund 2′s portfolio was worth $31 billion in end-March, compared with an acquisition price of $49.9 billion.
SoftBank has radically raised back its investing activity, and Son has withdrawn from public presentations to focus on the listing of chip designer Arm.
The Cambridge, England-based Arm has filed confidentially for a U.S. stock need listing that could land and provide a much-needed cash injection for SoftBank.
Intel is in chitchats with Arm to be an anchor investor in the chip designer’s IPO, a source acquainted with the matter said on Monday.
SoftBank’s shares were up 5% in Tuesday morning trade following the news.
While SoftBank has been pursuing a defensive approach to shore up its balance sheet, the coalition said it is examining to find a “balance between security and offense in May,” a signal it could support more in the future.