SoftBank Group agreed to sell its 15 per cent stake in e-learning business Kahoot to US private equity player General Atlantic, as woes in the technology sector continue to hit the Japanese company.
Kahoot confirmed the acquisition in a statement, explaining General Atlantic will become its largest shareholder.
General Atlantic is buying around 73.5 million shares in Kahoot, but did not disclose the transaction price.
SoftBank’s stake was valued at $122 million at the close of trading yesterday (15 September). This means it is effectively exiting at a loss, after putting at least $215 million into Kahoot through issuing new shares in October 2020.
Indeed, SoftBank is feeling the effects of a marked market downturn in the technology sector, with many of its investments being hit.
In its fiscal Q1 (calendar Q2), SoftBank reported a net loss of JPY3.2 trillion ($22.4 billion), with companies in its portfolio taking a hammering including e-commerce outfit Coupang and AI company SenseTime.
Kahoot CEO Eilert Hanoa stated it was grateful for SoftBank’s partnership over the past two years and it looked forward to working with General Atlantic, given its experience in scaling global education technology and software businesses.
The company runs a platform promoting online learning for schoolchildren alongside a corporate training service.
It is also backed by other high-profile companies including Disney and Microsoft.