SoftBank to cut seed funding in half this year as losses exceed $13 billion

Japanese investment giant SoftBank on Thursday it reported a huge net loss of 1.708 trillion yen ($13.14 billion) for the year ended March 31, saying it would be forced to cut startup funding by more than half this year.

The conglomerate also reported its biggest quarterly net loss ever, 2.1 trillion yen ($16.2 billion) for the January-March quarter, Nikkei Asia reports.

SoftBank also reported a historic loss of $27 billion in its full-year Vision Funds, due to heavy losses on investments in technology companies such as Coupang and Didi Global.

SoftBank invested $2.5 billion in the January-March quarter, significantly down from $10.4 billion in the previous quarter.

When it comes to startups, Softbank invested more than $46 billion in startups last fiscal year.

Masayoshi Son, CEO of SoftBank, said that compared to last year, “the number of new investments (in startups) will be half or even a quarter”.

Shares of the company plunged 8 percent before results Thursday, the lowest level in nearly two months.

Other underperformers included Singapore taxi company Grab, US food delivery company DoorDash and Indian payments group Paytm, which collectively lost nearly $5 billion in the quarter, according to estimates by Redex Research analyst Kirk Boodry, the Financial Times reported.

“The investment environment remains challenging, dominated by soaring inflation, increasingly complex geopolitical risks and a global energy shock,” said SoftBank.

SoftBank’s $100 billion Vision Fund was launched in 2017 and is backed by Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi.


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