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Japan's SoftBank may secure stake in Uber

13 November 2017

Ride-hailing app Uber has agreed to sell a stake of itself to Japanese investment group Softbank, for a figure believed to be $10bn.

"We've entered into an agreement with a consortium led by SoftBank and Dragoneer on a potential investment", an Uber spokesman said.

In addition to the direct purchase of $1bn Uber shares, Softbank also wants to buy out other investors' shares up to a total of $9bn, according to financial newswire Bloomberg.

The move also clears the way for Uber to go public among the most valuable tech firms in the world.

Disagreements in the tech firm's board appear to have been resolved, as early investor Benchmark Capital had been adamant that former CEO Travis Kalanick step down and withdraw his influence from the company. "Upon closing, it will help fuel our investments in technology and our continued expansion at home and overseas, while strengthening our corporate governance".

SoftBank did not immediately respond to Ars' request for comment.

The two parties reportedly reached an agreement on control of board seats, which included Benchmark putting its lawsuit on hold-while Kalanick will allow directors to vote on his future appointments to the three seats he oversees.

Although Kalanick quit as Uber chief exec, he remains on the board, having previously created the seat he now occupies. Now, the company has confirmed that Uber has sealed a multibillion dollar investment round from Japan.

This new funding deal will only be done once enough Uber shareholders opt to sell their shares.

Benchmark agreed to drop the lawsuit in return for Kalanick's board power being diluted but its co-operation depends on the Softbank investment going through.

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Japan's SoftBank may secure stake in Uber