Investment giant Softbank Group on Wednesday reported annual net profit of $ 45.8 billion, the best ever for a Japanese company, reaping the rewards of the rally in tech stocks to recover from the record loss of the ‘last year.
The telecommunications company turned investment giant has invested money in some of Silicon Valley’s biggest names and hottest new companies from AI to biotech through its $ 100 billion Vision Fund .
“The technology sector, on which the company is focusing its investment strategies, has been positively impacted by the accelerated adoption of digital services to deal with the pandemic,” SoftBank said in a statement.
“However, there is no guarantee that the current positive impact will be sustained in light of the uncertainties associated with the pandemic. “
Net profit for 2020-2021 was 4.99 billion yen ($ 45.8 billion), SoftBank said – surpassing its target and placing it among the ranks of the world’s most profitable companies.
In 2019-2020, SoftBank reported a net loss of 961.6 billion yen, a record loss for the company, as the onset of the pandemic compounded problems caused by its investment in the money-sharing startup. WeWork troubled offices.
But it quickly returned to profits as the impact of Covid-19 lockdowns played a large part in SoftBank’s favor, with valuations rising for the companies in its portfolio suited to the time.
South Korean e-commerce giant Coupang, backed by SoftBank, raised more than $ 4 billion in March during its initial public offering (IPO), making it the largest listing in the United States so far this year, as people flocked to shop online during lockdowns.
The value of Vision Fund’s stake in the US food delivery app DoorDash also increased massively after its IPO in December.
CEO Masayoshi Son, Japan’s richest person according to Forbes, hailed the Vision Fund in February as a “goose that produces golden eggs.”
After turning SoftBank into an investment giant, Son battled criticism of his involvement in sometimes struggling start-ups and brushed aside doubts about a massive asset sale program.
© 2021 AFP