Apple may join SoftBank's tech fund – report - Mobile World Live

Apple may join SoftBank’s tech fund – report

13 DEC 2016

Apple held talks with SoftBank about investing in the latter’s $100 billion technology fund, which is set to launch next year.

According to the Wall Street Journal, Apple and the Japanese giant discussed a possible investment to the tune of up to $1 billion, in a move that would pin together the world’s most valuable company with one of the world’s largest pools of investment capitals.

SoftBank, spearheaded by ambitious leader Masayoshi Son, revealed the SoftBank Vision fund in October, and will itself invest at least $25 billion.

It is also in the process of finalising an investment of up to $45 billion from Saudi Arabia’s government fund, while the sovereign wealth fund of Abu Dhabi is also considering a contribution.

Just last week, Son met with US President elect Donald Trump and said the company would invest up to $50 billion of the fund in the country, and create 50,000 jobs.

The objective of the fund is to tap into new technologies such as artificial intelligence and the internet of things.

For Apple, making a potential investment will give it an insight into such emerging technologies, a WSJ source explained.

The move would also mark a shift in Apple’s strategy, with its investments in the past focussed on taking small stakes in start-up companies.

In May, the US company also invested $1 billion in Chinese taxi company Didi, a rival to Uber.

The WSJ cautioned that talks between Apple and SoftBank were not finalised.

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Kavit Majithia

Kavit joined Mobile World Live in May 2015 as Content Editor. He started his journalism career at the Press Association before joining Euromoney’s graduate scheme in April 2010. Read More >>

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