Shares of Japanese billionaire Masayoshi Son’s Tokyo-listed SoftBank Group hit an all-time high of 10,420 Japanese yen on Tuesday–more than 20 years after reaching a previous high of 10,111 yen in February 2000. Son’s latest stock surge lifted his fortune to $48 billion, a tad below retail billionaire Tadashi Yanai’s net worth of $48.2 billion.
SoftBank’s stock has soared 221% since the firm’s founder appeared on the World’s Billionaires List in 2020, when his net worth stood at $16.6 billion, marking a transparent reversal in fortunes for the tech billionaire, who owns a 27% stake within the company.
Analysts attribute the stock’s recent run-up to a slew of things starting from asset sales to fund a purchase to a string of successful IPOs within the past few months.
From April to September 2020, SoftBank has been on a selling spree that yielded a cumulative 5.6 trillion yen ($53 billion). The sales included shares in American wireless network operator T Mobile, Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba and the as telecom affiliate SoftBank Corp. The new funds enabled the firm to buyback 1.3 trillion yen ($12.42 billion) worth of shares as of January 31, 2021.
Additionally, SoftBank signed a $40 billion deal in September 2020 to sell its stake in chip designer Arm to U.S. semiconductor manufacturer Nvidia. SoftBank also reported strong numbers for the nine months ended New Year’s Eve, 2020. income rose 6% to 4,138 billion yen ($40 billion), while net surged 541% to three ,055.2 billion yen ($29.6 billion). The firm reported cumulative investment gains of $27.6 billion across its SoftBank Vision Funds 1 and a couple of within the same period.
The coronavirus pandemic, ironically, contributed to the current positive outcome. during a February presentation, SoftBank noted that with reference to the vision funds there was a “significant growth in asset values driven mainly by a greater demand for online services under Covid-19 and IPOs of portfolio companies.”
Wipe out of successful IPOs of companies backed by Son in Silicon Valley, like online property marketplace Opendoor; food delivery app DoorDash and biomed outfit Seer, added extra sizzle to the SoftBank stock. SoftBank-backed start-ups like Indian insurance aggregator PolicyBazaar and China’s ride-hailing company Didi Chuxing, expecting to list and with them Son is looking for more IPO bonanzas in 2021. This month, South Korean e-commerce firm Coupang, during which SoftBank has quite a one-third stake, filed for an IPO.
The Japanese billionaire wants to require 10 to twenty portfolio companies public annually, a target that analysts say might be achievable.
Jefferies Singapore analyst Atul Goyal said that, at SoftBank Group we believe in a very superiority because it is within the right place with many large sized investments privately companies at the proper time–when there’s this IPO frenzy.
Son recently compared SoftBank to a goose that lays golden eggs, stating that he wants his investment to supply between 10 and 20 “golden eggs” a year. That ought to put the ghost of the failed WeWork IPO of 2019 firmly to rest.