0R2L.L - T-Mobile US, Inc.

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96.09
+38.90 (+68.02%)
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Previous Close57.19
Open96.09
Bid0.00 x 0
Ask0.00 x 0
Day's Range96.09 - 96.09
52 Week Range96.09 - 96.09
Volume185
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Market Cap79.969B
Beta (5Y Monthly)0.27
PE Ratio (TTM)23.66
EPS (TTM)4.06
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    • Bloomberg

      SoftBank Doubles Vision Fund Chief’s Pay Despite Record Loss

      (Bloomberg) -- The head of SoftBank Group Corp.’s Vision Fund received a substantial increase in compensation even as the investment business delivered a $17.7 billion loss.Rajeev Misra earned 1.61 billion yen ($15 million) in the year ended March 31, more than double his pay a year earlier, SoftBank said in a statement on Friday. The Vision Fund lost 1.9 trillion yen in the period, triggering the worst loss ever in the Japanese company’s 39-year history.SoftBank had to write down the valuations of companies like WeWork and Uber Technologies Inc. because of business missteps and the coronavirus fallout. Its return on the fund was negative 6%, compared with 62% just a year ago. Still, Misra was SoftBank’s second-highest-paid executive last year after Chief Operating Officer Marcelo Claure, even though Misra received no bonus and most of his compensation was in base pay. Founder Masayoshi Son took a 9% compensation cut, earning 209 million yen.“What kind of message is Son sending by giving Misra a raise despite the disastrous results he delivered?” said Atul Goyal, senior analyst at Jefferies Group. “The optics is just not good.”The pay hike for Misra comes at a time when the Vision Fund is planning deep cuts in staffing. The reductions across all levels of staff could affect about 10% of the fund’s workforce of roughly 500, according to people familiar with the matter. The Vision Fund, which has stopped making new investments after spending 85% of its capital, lists 30 people as investors on its website, including all of its managing partners, partners and directors.The fund has struggled since WeWork botched its efforts to go public last year and SoftBank stepped in to bail the company out. The Vision Fund currently manages more than 80 portfolio companies, but Son expects about 15 of the fund’s startups will likely go bankrupt while predicting another 15 will thrive.Separately, SoftBank is moving two managing partners at the Vision Fund into new roles. Akshay Naheta will become senior vice president, assisting Son in investments and providing strategic advice. Kentaro Matsui will transition to a senior advisory role at SoftBank Group.Claure, who helped close Sprint Corp.’s merger with T-Mobile US Inc. and is leading the effort to turn around WeWork, made 2.11 billion yen, a 17% raise. He also oversees a Latin American investment fund for SoftBank.SoftBank declined to comment on the reasons for changes in pay.Chief Strategy Officer Katsunori Sago earned 1.11 billion yen, a 13% increase for the former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. executive. Ken Miyauchi, head of SoftBank’s domestic telecom operation, made 699 million yen, a 43% drop. Simon Segars, head of its ARM Holdings Plc chip unit, did not make the list because his pay dropped below 100 million yen. Segars earned 1.1 billion yen the previous year.Ronald Fisher, Son’s long-time lieutenant and SoftBank Group vice chairman, saw his pay plunge 79% to 680 million yen. Fisher’s remuneration from the Vision Fund, where he runs the U.S. operations, totaled 1.27 billion yen, including a 767 million yen bonus. But he lost 701 million yen in compensation not related to the fund. SoftBank said the drop reflects a decline in stock price, but didn’t provide further details.SoftBank’s disastrous bet on WeWork has been viewed internally as Fisher’s project. Before SoftBank first invested in the company in 2017, Fisher met with executives at IWG Plc, a European competitor with a much lower valuation and many more sites, according to people familiar with the matter. Fisher interpreted the unfavorable metrics as a sign of growth potential. A month later, the Vision Fund led a $4.4 billion investment round into WeWork at a $20 billion valuation.Last year, after WeWork’s effort to go public fell apart, SoftBank stepped in to organize a bailout and put Claure in charge of turning around the business. But the pandemic has hammered its operations as workers shy away from gathering in shared office spaces. Earlier this month, SoftBank wrote down the value of its stake to $2.9 billion, more than 90% lower than its peak.(Updates with analyst comment in fourth paragraph)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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    • T-Mobile (TMUS) Outpaces Stock Market Gains: What You Should Know
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    • The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: T-Mobile US, Citigroup, Blackstone Group, Regeneron Pharmaceuticals and Canadian National Railway
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    • SoftBank Hands New Roles to Two Vision Fund Managing Partners
      Bloomberg

      SoftBank Hands New Roles to Two Vision Fund Managing Partners

      (Bloomberg) -- SoftBank Group Corp. has named Akshay Naheta senior vice president, moving the Vision Fund managing partner to a new role as the company looks for ways to improve its governance and stem losses, according to people familiar with the matter.Abu Dhabi-based Naheta will assist SoftBank founder and Chief Executive Officer Masayoshi Son in managing the conglomerate’s investments function and will provide strategic advice to its global management team, said some of the people, who asked not to be identified because the appointment isn’t yet public. Naheta will start his new role in June, one of them said.Another Vision Fund managing partner, Tokyo-based Kentaro Matsui, will transition to a senior advisory role at SoftBank Group, one of the people said. The moves were mutual decisions and part of an effort to refine the originally $100 billion fund’s operating model, the person added. Both Matsui and Naheta -- whose previous roles were focused on Asia and the Europe, Middle East and Africa regions, respectively -- are expected to continue to work on select Vision Fund activities.A spokeswoman for SoftBank and a spokesman for SoftBank’s Vision Fund declined to comment. The senior vice president title at SoftBank Group is held by the likes of its chief financial officer and chief legal officer.The executive reshuffle signals a heightened focus on SoftBank’s senior ranks in a period of turbulence for the Japanese conglomerate. The company reported the biggest annual loss in its history this month as Vision Fund portfolio companies lost value, and it’s been facing pressure from hedge fund Elliott Management Corp. to bolster governance and buy back stock.Read more: SoftBank’s Masa-Misra Partnership Strained by Losses, InfightingNaheta, who oversaw investments in the likes of chip designer Nvidia Corp., pharmaceutical company Roivant Sciences Ltd. and German online car trader Auto1, is close to Middle Eastern investor Mubadala Investment Co. and had been working on raising funds for a second Vision Fund, according to a person familiar with the matter.Matsui, who focused on investments in China, oversaw the Vision Fund’s bets on companies including Full Truck Alliance and Ping An Good Doctor.Potential LayoffsSoftBank’s Vision Fund is weighing job cuts that could affect about 10% of the company’s workforce after reporting about $18 billion in losses from the declining value of its startups, people familiar with the matter have said. In recent weeks, a separate SoftBank unit, SoftBank Group International, cut roughly 10% of staff.SoftBank earlier this month said it plans to spend as much as 500 billion yen ($4.6 billion) to buy back shares through next March, on top of an existing repurchase plan of the same size. The conglomerate is accelerating efforts to raise cash and is closing in on a deal to sell about $20 billion of its stock in T-Mobile US Inc., people familiar with the matter said previously.Before joining the Vision Fund, Naheta was managing partner of investment firm Knight Assets & Co. and head of principal strategies at Deutsche Bank AG. Matsui previously worked for Mizuho Securities Co. where he advised on some of SoftBank’s largest bets, including Arm, Vodafone Japan and Sprint.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

    • Top Research Reports for T-Mobile, Citigroup & Blackstone
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    • Bloomberg

      SoftBank’s Vision Fund Is Planning to Cut 10% of Staff

      (Bloomberg) -- SoftBank Group Corp.’s Vision Fund is planning deep cuts in staffing after reporting about $18 billion in losses from the declining value of its startups, according to people familiar with the matter.The reductions could affect about 10% of the fund’s workforce of roughly 500, said two of the people, who asked not to be identified discussing personnel decisions. The Vision Fund’s headquarters are in London, with additional operations in Tokyo and California. The cuts will be across all levels of staff, said one person.A spokesman for the Vision Fund declined to comment.SoftBank founder Masayoshi Son and his $100 billion Vision Fund changed the tech industry by handing out enormous checks to relatively unproven startups. But the fund went from SoftBank’s main profit contributor a year ago to its biggest drag on earnings. It lost 1.9 trillion yen ($17.7 billion) last fiscal year after writing down the value of investments, including WeWork and Uber Technologies Inc.Son originally said he hoped to raise a new Vision Fund every two to three years, but he has conceded he can’t attract money now because of the poor performance. The fund, led by Rajeev Misra, operates as a SoftBank affiliate with most of the money coming from limited partners, led by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund and Abu Dhabi’s Mubadala Investment Co.“It makes sense that SoftBank is cutting positions at the Vision Fund as they are in an extremely difficult situation, and they may start targeting highly paid workers to cut costs,” said Koji Hirai, head of M&A advisory firm Kachitas Corp. in Tokyo.The Vision Fund grew rapidly after launch three years ago as Misra recruited scores of people from the finance industry, including many of his former colleagues from Deutsche Bank. Among its managing partners are several of the German bank’s ex-employees, including Colin Fan, former co-head of its investment banking division.The fund also set up an unusual compensation structure that includes a $5 billion loan to employees. The debt is swapped for equity in the fund and generates profit when deals make money -- and losses when they don’t, scaled by seniority, people familiar with the matter have said. The poor performance so far, along with the layoffs, may prompt some employees to look for other positions.“One side effect is that the best people at SoftBank may exit to find better funds,” said Hirai. “If so, their fund business may become even worse, sliding down from a slope.”The Vision Fund has struggled since WeWork botched its efforts to go public last year and SoftBank stepped in to bail the company out. The Vision Fund currently manages more than 80 portfolio companies, but Son expects about 15 of the fund’s startups will likely go bankrupt while predicting another 15 will thrive.“Vision Fund’s results are not something to be proud of,” Son said earlier this month as he announced record losses. “If the results are bad, you can’t raise money from investors. Things aren’t good, that’s why we are investing with our own money.”The fund has already unwound some investments, including selling a nearly 50% stake in dog-walking startup Wag Labs back to the company last year. Son has said he plans to sell off about $42 billion in assets to finance stock buybacks and pay down debt.SoftBank disclosed it’s unloading some shares in Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and is in talks to sell about $20 billion of T-Mobile US Inc., Bloomberg News reported. It’s also exploring a deal for its minority stake in industrial software maker OSIsoft LLC that could be worth $1.5 billion.SoftBank shares, after plummeting in March, have recovered and are little changed for the year. The stock rose just more than 1% in Tokyo trading.One emerging question is how Alibaba -- SoftBank’s most valuable holding -- will be affected by the clash between the U.S. and China. A bill just approved by the U.S. Senate could force Chinese companies like Alibaba to stop trading their shares on U.S. exchanges.“The big picture is SoftBank is caught up with U.S.-China conflict right now, and SoftBank may need to conduct a drastic restructuring if Alibaba was delisted from New York,” said Hirai. “Its main banks and the capital markets are anxiously awaiting an outcome for the situation.”(Updates with additional details starting in the first paragraph.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

    • Bloomberg

      Intelsat Joins SES in Committing to C-Band Auction of Airwaves

      (Bloomberg) -- Intelsat SA said it filed a commitment with the Federal Communications Commission to give up airwaves that are to be auctioned for use by mobile broadband, preserving its positioning for a payout from the sale.The action follows a similar commitment earlier Tuesday by fellow satellite communications provider SES SA, the other major holder of rights to the so-called C-band airwaves that are to be sold as the FCC pushes for more frequencies for fast 5G networks.The satellite companies will retain some airwaves to serve current customers. The companies are in line for a share of as much as $9.7 billion for leaving airwaves coveted by wireless providers. The FCC set a May 29 deadline for providers to say whether they will participate.Stephen Spengler, chief executive officer of Intelsat, said in an emailed news release that the company was “committed to advancing – at an accelerated pace – America’s position in the race to 5G.”“We understand what’s required to successfully and quickly transition current users, while maintaining high-quality, uninterrupted broadcast to more than 100 million American homes and businesses,” Spengler added.Bidders at the auction that’s to begin Dec. 8 are expected to include large mobile broadband providers such as AT&T Inc., Verizon Communications Inc. and T-Mobile US Inc.Intelsat, weighed down by almost $15 billion of debt, filed for bankruptcy protection May 14 as part of efforts to raise cash needed to prepare its spectrum for the auction.The FCC’s plan would provide $9.7 billion in compensation to satellite providers if they hit deadlines for leaving the airwaves quickly. Separately, the companies could share in another $3.3 billion to $5.2 billion to reimburse them for costs of making the switch.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

    • SoftBank’s Vision Fund to Explore Sale of OSIsoft Stake
      Bloomberg

      SoftBank’s Vision Fund to Explore Sale of OSIsoft Stake

      (Bloomberg) -- SoftBank Group Corp. is exploring a sale of a minority stake in OSIsoft LLC that could be worth more than $1.5 billion, according to people familiar with the matter.SoftBank is working with a financial adviser to sell the stake in the industrial software company, which is held by its Vision Fund, said the people, who asked to not be identified because the matter isn’t public. The move is part of SoftBank’s new focus on raising cash, they said.The Japanese firm’s plans aren’t final and it could opt to keep the stake, the people said.Representatives for the Vision Fund and OSIsoft declined to comment.SoftBank Chief Executive Officer Masayoshi Son has said he would sell off about $42 billion in assets to finance stock buybacks and pay down debt. SoftBank disclosed it’s selling shares in Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and it’s in talks to sell about $20 billion of T-Mobile US Inc., Bloomberg News reported.SoftBank’s Vision Fund has unwound some investments, including dumping its entire stake in chipmaker Nvidia Corp. in February 2019. The fund, which has made bets on companies like WeWork that have cratered, sold a nearly 50% stake in dog walking startup Wag Labs back to the company last year.San Leandro-California based OSIsoft sells software into sectors including oil and gas, utilities and pharmaceutical development, according to its website.SoftBank acquired a “significant minority stake” in the company in 2017 from backers including Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and TCV, according to a statement. Its investment was worth a bit less than $1 billion, a person familiar with the matter said at the time.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

    • Hedge Funds Sought Refuge In T-Mobile US, Inc. (TMUS) During The Crash
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    • A Smartphone at a Smart Price? How About Three! A Trio of Affordable New Devices Head to T-Mobile
      Business Wire

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      Staying connected is more important than ever, and smartphone shoppers shouldn’t have to choose between quality and price. So, today T-Mobile (NASDAQ: TMUS) announced a lineup of new, affordable, feature-packed smartphones coming soon to T-Mobile, Sprint and Metro stores — the LG Stylo 6, LG K51 and the Motorola moto g stylus, all priced under $260.

    • Android Fans Just Got a Texting Upgrade. T-Mobile and Google Join Forces to Expand Rich Messaging (RCS)
      Business Wire

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    • Barrons.com

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      Clorox and Netflix Stock Prospered During the Pandemic. Can They Continue?

      Two very different companies found their shares climbing together as the crisis deepened. But what will happen as cooped-up people emerge?

    • MarketWatch

      American Tower REIT's stock surges to pace gains among its peers, after Oppenheimer turns bullish

      Shares of American Tower REIT surged 5.9% in afternoon trading Friday, to pace the gainers among its large-capitalization peers, after Oppenheimer analyst Timothy Horan turned bullish, citing attractive valuation and increasing broadband demand amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Horan raised his rating on the real estate investment trust, which focues on multi-tenant communications real estate, to outperform from peer perform. His price target on the stock (AMT) is $270, which is 10.4% above current levels. "AMT is benefiting from very strong emerging market demand, and India which has been a drag, appears set to accelerate growth as the industry has consolidated down to a reasonable level," Horan wrote in a note to clients. He said he had been on the sidelines because growth had slowed slightly, uncertainties related to the T-Mobile U.S. Inc. merger with Sprint and "rich" valuations, but given the declines in Treasury yields, he now believes AMT's adjusted funds from operations (AFFO) yield of 3.7% are "attractive." The yield on the 10-year Treasury note was last at 0.661%, down from 1.919% at the end of 2019. The stock was the biggest gainer Friday among the components of the SPDR Real Estate Select Sector ETF's , which was trading up 1.8% on Friday. Horan also upgraded Crown Castle International Corp. to outperform from perform, and the stock was the REIT ETF's second biggest gainer with a 3.4% rally. Year to date, AMT has advanced 5.1%, while the REIT ETF has dropped 15.7% and the S&P 500 has lost 8.6%.

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    • Bloomberg

      SoftBank To Sell 5% of Wireless Arm For Up to $2.9 Billion

      (Bloomberg) -- SoftBank Group Corp. said it will raise about 310.2 billion yen ($2.9 billion) by selling a 5% stake in its Japanese wireless subsidiary this month, the latest in a series of asset divestitures intended to fortify its ailing balance sheet.The group intends to sell 240 million shares of SoftBank Corp., reducing its ownership stake to 62.1% after the deal, the parent company said in a statement on Friday. The total amount raised is slightly below that implied by the 1,306.5 yen to 1,320 yen price range SoftBank announced one day earlier. The deal closes on May 26.Founder Masayoshi Son has said he would sell off about $42 billion in assets to help finance stock buybacks and pay down debt. SoftBank disclosed it’s selling shares in Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. through complex contracts, and it’s in talks to sell about $20 billion of T-Mobile US Inc., Bloomberg News reported this week.Read more: SoftBank Is Said to Plan T-Mobile Deal as Soon as This WeekSoftBank Corp. shares fell as much as 3.4% to 1,327.5 yen in Tokyo trading on Friday. The unit first sold shares to the public in December 2018 at 1,500 yen a share.Son is struggling with the impact of the coronavirus on a portfolio of startups weighted heavily toward the sharing economy. Its Vision Fund business lost 1.9 trillion yen last fiscal year after writing down the value of investments from WeWork to Uber Technologies Inc. The billionaire has turned to ever larger stock buybacks to sustain SoftBank in the interim.The mounting losses have also imposed immense pressure on SoftBank’s often opaque structure and management.SoftBank’s Masa-Misra Partnership Strained by Losses, InfightingFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

    • SoftBank To Sell 5% of Wireless Unit in Japan For $2.9 Billion
      Bloomberg

      SoftBank To Sell 5% of Wireless Unit in Japan For $2.9 Billion

      (Bloomberg) -- SoftBank Group Corp. said it will raise about 310.2 billion yen ($2.9 billion) by selling a 5% stake in its Japanese wireless subsidiary this month, the latest in a series of asset divestitures intended to fortify its ailing balance sheet.The group intends to sell 240 million shares of SoftBank Corp., reducing its ownership stake to 62.1% after the deal, the parent company said in a statement on Friday. The total amount raised is slightly below that implied by the 1,306.5 yen to 1,320 yen price range SoftBank announced one day earlier. The deal closes on May 26.Founder Masayoshi Son has said he would sell off about $42 billion in assets to help finance stock buybacks and pay down debt. SoftBank disclosed it’s selling shares in Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. through complex contracts, and it’s in talks to sell about $20 billion of T-Mobile US Inc., Bloomberg News reported this week.Read more: SoftBank Is Said to Plan T-Mobile Deal as Soon as This WeekSoftBank Corp. shares fell as much as 3.4% to 1,327.5 yen in Tokyo trading on Friday. The unit first sold shares to the public in December 2018 at 1,500 yen a share.Son is struggling with the impact of the coronavirus on a portfolio of startups weighted heavily toward the sharing economy. Its Vision Fund business lost 1.9 trillion yen last fiscal year after writing down the value of investments from WeWork to Uber Technologies Inc. The billionaire has turned to ever larger stock buybacks to sustain SoftBank in the interim.The mounting losses have also imposed immense pressure on SoftBank’s often opaque structure and management.SoftBank’s Masa-Misra Partnership Strained by Losses, InfightingFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

    • T-Mobile Launches ‘Connecting Heroes’ Free 5G for First Responder Agencies is Here
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    • Barrons.com

      SoftBank Group to Sell $3 Billion Stake in Japanese Wireless Company

      In another step toward fulfilling its promise to raise $41 billion to pay down debt and buy back stock, SoftBank Group announced that it plans to sell 7.5% of its stake in SoftBank Corp.

    • SoftBank’s Masa-Misra Partnership Strained by Losses, Infighting
      Bloomberg

      SoftBank’s Masa-Misra Partnership Strained by Losses, Infighting

      (Bloomberg) -- In early March, before the coronavirus pandemic triggered a global economic lockdown, SoftBank Group Corp. founder Masayoshi Son paid tribute to Rajeev Misra, the man who runs his $100 billion technology investment fund. Wearing a $70 Uniqlo down jacket, the Japanese billionaire put his arm around Misra’s shoulders at a town hall meeting in San Carlos, California. He said he would never forget the help Misra provided when he was at Deutsche Bank AG more than a decade earlier and spoke of the trust and respect they had developed since, according to a summary shared internally. “We are family,” Son said. But behind the smiles and talk of kinship, another story is unfolding, one about the perplexing relationship at the top of SoftBank. The Vision Fund this week reported a loss for the latest fiscal year of $17.7 billion as it wrote down the value of portfolio companies including WeWork and Uber Technologies Inc. That triggered the biggest loss in SoftBank’s 39-year history. Its shares have been hammered as investors fret that the virus will batter the company’s holdings even more, and Son has said he will sell $42 billion in assets.Misra is at the heart of the problem in ways that go beyond how the fund’s companies are performing, people familiar with the matter say. He has come under fire for alleged efforts to tarnish internal rivals, including a previously undisclosed clash with SoftBank Chief Operating Officer Marcelo Claure. The company has acknowledged that it’s conducting an internal review. At the same time, Elliott Management Corp., the activist investment fund that built up an almost $3 billion stake in the company, has asked SoftBank to name three independent directors and create a new board committee to improve the Vision Fund’s investment process, according to correspondence reviewed by Bloomberg News.“Misra and Masa go back a long way, but gratitude should only last so long,” said Justin Tang, head of Asian research at United First Partners in Singapore. “If Misra is not the problem, he’s at least a big part of it.”The corporate intrigue involving Claure began in 2018, when the Bolivian entrepreneur was under consideration to join the Vision Fund’s board and investment committee, according to six people with first-hand knowledge of the matter and a review of emails and documents. The fund — run by Misra as an affiliate of the Japanese company — hired a Swiss firm called Heptagone to conduct a background check on Claure’s possible ties to money laundering and drug cartels, said the people, who asked for anonymity because they feared retaliation. The report cleared him, but its focus opened a rift between the two men that kept Claure off the fund’s board and solidified Misra’s control, the people said.A Vision Fund spokesman said one of the fund’s limited partners, not Misra, requested the background check and Misra wasn’t involved in determining its focus. SoftBank has been told the same thing and doesn’t have evidence otherwise, people familiar with the matter say. But current and former executives across the SoftBank empire remain convinced that Misra played a role since the report was commissioned by his team and follows a pattern of similar accusations about undermining internal rivals. In March, days after the Wall Street Journal reported that Misra had allegedly orchestrated a campaign to sabotage two former SoftBank executives beginning in 2015, Son ducked questions about the story from investors at a meeting at the Lotte New York Palace hotel, according to two people who were present. One of them, a SoftBank shareholder, told Bloomberg News afterward that the company needs a Vision Fund leader more focused on tight operations than turf battles. Son has remained steadfast in his support. “Rajeev has been instrumental in the company’s growth and success,” Son said in a statement to Bloomberg. “He’s also been a very trusted senior executive and friend, and will continue to have my full support and confidence.” The Vision Fund spokesman denied that Misra was involved in any campaigns to undermine company executives. “The claims underpinning this story are untrue, and have been fully denied,” he said.But some SoftBank insiders are wondering how Misra has managed to survive. It may be, they said, that Son needs his financial expertise to navigate the next few months of asset sales, share buybacks and loan repayments as the coronavirus weakens portfolio companies, hurting SoftBank’s ability to borrow. Misra helped Son finance difficult deals before joining the company in 2014 and played a crucial role in raising capital for the Vision Fund. He has also established his own power base at the fund’s London headquarters, surrounded by a coterie of former Deutsche Bank colleagues.Still, there are long-term risks for Son in tolerating what many see as a divisive culture and chaotic infighting that have plagued the Vision Fund since its inception. “Misra personifies what Vision Fund is about — a bunch of dealmakers obsessed with leverage who have no business running a venture capital fund,” said Amir Anvarzadeh, a market strategist at Asymmetric Advisors in Singapore, who has been covering the company since it went public in 1994. “But it would be naïve to put all of their problems at Misra’s feet. Son has the ultimate word.” Son and Misra share a bond as outsiders who left their native lands to study abroad and ended up finding wealth and prestige. Son, 62,  went to the University of California, Berkeley and launched businesses in the U.S. before founding SoftBank in Japan in 1981. Misra, 58 and born in India, earned degrees from the University of Pennsylvania and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology before embarking on a career in banking at Merrill Lynch.But while Son never worked for anyone else, Misra always operated within large organizations, navigating their power structures. He moved to Deutsche Bank in 1997, where he eventually became global head of credit trading, turning it into one of the biggest traders of credit-default swaps — instruments at the heart of the 2008 financial crisis. One of his traders, Greg Lippmann, featured in Michael Lewis’s The Big Short, bet on a crash in the U.S. housing market, even as Deutsche Bank was a leading player in creating and selling mortgage-backed securities to investors. With slicked-back hair and a thicket of woven bracelets around his wrist, Misra speaks with an intimacy that suggests he’s confiding in a listener as he races from one subject to the next with a burning urgency. He wears his eccentricities proudly: He often padded around the office in stockinged feet, incessantly smoking, vaping or chewing nicotine gum.Misra joined SoftBank after stints at UBS Group AG and Fortress Investment Group. He started as head of strategic finance, reporting directly to Son, but his connections to the boss preceded his appointment. In 2006, Deutsche Bank helped SoftBank finance the acquisition of the Japanese wireless operations of Vodafone Group Plc, one of the most consequential deals of Son’s career. The $15 billion purchase was the largest leveraged buyout ever in Asia at the time and faced skepticism because Vodafone had struggled against the country’s top wireless players. Son succeeded in turning the business into a viable competitor, in part by persuading Steve Jobs to give him exclusive rights to the iPhone in Japan, and completing SoftBank’s transformation from software distributor to telecom conglomerate.Misra proved his worth at SoftBank as well. Son had acquired the troubled No. 3 wireless operator in the U.S., Sprint Corp., but the turnaround had proven far more difficult than the one at Vodafone. Misra put together a novel loan package secured by Sprint’s wireless licenses that helped it avoid bankruptcy.From the start, Misra clashed with Nikesh Arora, a hotshot former Google executive Son recruited in 2014 to oversee SoftBank’s startup investing, according to people with direct knowledge of their relationship. Arora would openly question Misra’s judgment, even on financial issues, leaving him fuming, the people said.In early 2015, Misra set out to undermine Arora and one of his allies at SoftBank, Alok Sama, the Wall Street Journal reported in February. The newspaper said Misra worked through intermediaries to plant negative stories about the executives, concocted a shareholder campaign against them and attempted unsuccessfully to lure Arora into a sexual tryst. “These are old allegations which contain a series of falsehoods that have been consistently denied,” a spokesman for Misra told Bloomberg News, adding that Misra thinks highly of Arora and that the two men worked together productively on many deals. “Mr. Misra did not orchestrate a campaign against his former colleagues.” A spokesman for the Wall Street Journal said the paper stands by its reporting.Arora was cleared of wrongdoing by SoftBank, but he left in 2016 and is now chief executive officer of Palo Alto Networks Inc. Sama, who had been in charge of SoftBank’s investments and inked many of its early startup deals, seemed a logical candidate to play a leading role at the Vision Fund. But some of the limited partners expressed reservations about him, people familiar with the matter said. Arora didn’t respond to requests for comment, and an attorney for Sama declined to comment.Meanwhile, Misra solidified his ties to Son. He spent time in Tokyo in early 2017 as Son worked on the acquisition of Fortress. He also used his former Deutsche Bank connections to help close a deal for Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund to become the Vision Fund’s cornerstone investor, chipping in $45 billion, almost half of the capital. That May, Misra was named head of the Vision Fund. The clash with Claure began after Sama was sidelined, according to SoftBank executives familiar with the matter. Son hit it off with Claure in 2013, when SoftBank took a majority stake in Brightstar, a Miami-based mobile phone distributor he founded that became one of Latin America’s fastest-growing startups. The 6-foot-6 executive quickly demonstrated how SoftBank could save millions on its purchases, winning respect from his new boss. A year later, Son tapped him to replace Sprint’s CEO. Claure made enough progress fixing the wireless operator that Son rewarded him with a seat on SoftBank’s board in 2017 and named him chief operating officer the following year. Then, Son gave Claure a new challenge: building teams in government affairs, legal services and operations to support the company’s expanding portfolio. Part of the mission was to assemble and lead a task force that would help startups fine-tune their strategies to improve execution and speed their path to profitability. The mandate would place him at the center of the action as SoftBank transformed itself into a technology investment conglomerate. It also apparently put Claure on a collision course with Misra.The first hint that this might not be a typical corporate rivalry came months before the Heptagone investigation, according to a person close to Claure. In the summer of 2018, Stephen Bye, a former Sprint executive, reached out to Claure with unsettling news. Bye, Sprint’s chief technology officer until 2015, was approached by a private investigator trying to dig up dirt on his former boss, the person said. Bye declined to talk to the investigator and immediately called Claure. Claure, 49, was used to people poking into his past because he was often approached about joining corporate boards. But he had also heard speculation about Misra’s role in the campaigns against Arora and Sama, and he expressed concern that he was next, the person said. The Vision Fund spokesman said neither Misra nor anyone else from the fund was involved in the approach to Claure’s former employee. Bye declined to comment.In October 2018, after the murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi at the hands of Saudi agents, Son and Misra traveled to Riyadh to meet with officials of the sovereign wealth fund, their biggest investor. They made the trip during the Saudi fund’s annual investment conference, even as other global executives canceled their travel plans. While the two men didn’t attend the conference, Son met with the head of the Public Investment Fund, Yasir Al-Rumayyan, and laid out the new role he envisioned for Claure. He would join the Vision Fund board and its investment committee, and manage the group of operations specialists when it was embedded within the fund, according to a proposal reviewed by Bloomberg News. The changes, if implemented, would give Claure broad authority at the fund.Later that year the Vision Fund commissioned the Heptagone report. What made it different from routine due diligence, according to the people directly involved, was that the sleuths were asked to answer three specific questions: Was Claure or any company under his control ever involved in money laundering, tax evasion or fraud? Was he ever in a relationship with individuals charged with or convicted of money laundering, drug trafficking or other crimes? Had he been convicted of a crime in the U.S. or elsewhere? Claure’s company, Brightstar, generated enormous amounts of cash selling used phones in Latin America in the 1990s, exactly the kind of business that could be used for money laundering, Heptagone’s report said. But the report found no evidence Brightstar or Claure were involved in such activities, people who saw it said.Heptagone went on to say that Claure had a long-standing friendship with Carlos Becerra, a San Diego businessman whose name had appeared in U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency reports for possible involvement in cocaine distribution and money laundering. After Becerra sold a unit of his company to Brightstar, in 2007, the two men remained friendly. A photo on Becerra’s Instagram account from June 2015 showed him posing on a boat dock with Claure. Becerra, who hadn’t been charged with a drug-related crime, told Bloomberg News that his relationship with Claure was cordial, not close. He denied any involvement in money laundering or drug dealing and said he has held a California liquor license since 2001, which requires a background check and isn’t available to anyone with a criminal record. The closest Claure came to a crime, the Heptagone report found, was his involvement in a Miami bar fight in the 1990s in which no one was hurt and he wasn’t charged. Heptagone co-founder and managing partner Alexis Pfefferlé said he couldn’t confirm or deny his firm’s involvement in any report but added that Heptagone “has always been able to fully complete its assignments.”The Vision Fund spokesman said the fund often runs background checks on employees, so it wasn’t abnormal to conduct one on Claure, given his potential involvement in operations. The only thing atypical, he said, was that it came at the request of a limited partner. While the Heptagone report cleared Claure, its underlying premise appeared to be that a Latin American entrepreneur must have built his business through unsavory means, according to the people who reviewed the document. Claure was furious. He went to Son, outraged at what he saw as an attempt to damage his reputation, the people said. SoftBank took over the due diligence from the Vision Fund and gave the job to Kroll, a more established security firm, the people said. Kroll, which declined to comment, found no problems in Claure’s past. But suspicious that Misra was behind the campaign, Claure told Son he wanted no formal part of the Vision Fund, the people said. Son ultimately decided to keep the two out of each other’s way. In February 2019, about 40 employees Claure had hired were shifted over to work for Misra. Claure, who had moved his wife and four youngest daughters to Tokyo less than two months earlier, headed back to Miami. He has since helped close Sprint’s merger with T-Mobile US Inc. and is leading the effort to turn around WeWork. He also oversees a Latin American investment fund for SoftBank and co-owns a Major League Soccer team, Inter Miami, with former British star David Beckham. SoftBank denied that Claure and Misra clashed over the operations group and said both men agreed that folding it into the Vision Fund was in the best interests of the business. “While we have had our occasional differences,” Claure said in a statement, “I have a close and collaborative relationship with Rajeev, including my involvement with many of the Vision Fund’s largest portfolio companies.” The relationships Misra forged at Deutsche Bank continue to underpin his power and influence. Colin Fan, a former co-head of the investment bank, moved to SoftBank in 2017, joining more than half a dozen former bankers and traders from the German lender. But arguably the most important connection forged at Deutsche Bank is Misra’s relationship with London-based merchant bank Centricus, founded by three former Misra colleagues: Michele Faissola, Dalinc Ariburnu and Nizar Al-Bassam. The firm, originally called FAB Partners for the principals’ last names, began working with SoftBank in 2016, when Misra asked it to help find financing for the Vision Fund. Centricus advised on the creation and structure of the fund, suggested employees and helped cement the investment by the Saudi sovereign wealth fund — a deal hashed out in October of that year when Mohammed bin Salman, then the country’s deputy crown prince, met with Son in Tokyo.For its work, Centricus negotiated a payment of more than $100 million, people familiar with the arrangement said. And the fees kept coming. Centricus advised SoftBank on its $3.3 billion deal for Fortress and teamed up with Son on a failed bid to start a 24-team soccer tournament with FIFA. The firm also was brought in to help raise capital for a second Vision Fund, Bloomberg reported in mid-2019.Some SoftBank and Vision Fund executives have questioned the amount paid to Centricus, the people with knowledge of the arrangement said. Although fees for helping companies raise capital are often about 1%, making the sum paid to Centricus a good deal for SoftBank, executives critical of Misra’s leadership were piqued that the recipients were former Deutsche Bank colleagues, the people said. Centricus and SoftBank both declined to comment about fees or any other aspect of their relationship.Faissola left the firm after his connections with the Qatari government created tension with the Saudis. But Centricus hired another former Deutsche Bank colleague of Misra’s as a consultant: London-based hedge fund manager Bertrand Des Pallieres, a senior trader at the bank from 2005 to 2007 who reported directly to Misra. Des Pallieres was under consideration for a job at the Vision Fund in 2018, the people said, but that all changed after the Wall Street Journal reported that Misra had recruited Italian businessman Alessandro Benedetti to undermine Arora and Sama. Benedetti, who denied through a spokesman that he had anything to do with those efforts, was a business associate of Des Pallieres. A year later, Des Pallieres became a Centricus consultant.SoftBank’s relationship with Centricus began fraying last year, according to people familiar with the matter. Misra argued that SoftBank had no further need for the firm, as Son had developed ties of his own with MBS, the people said. And Misra had his own relationship with Al-Rumayyan, the Saudi sovereign wealth fund head. In October 2019, Misra and Son attended a party for Al-Rumayyan and MBS on a yacht in the Red Sea, people with knowledge of the event said, confirming a Wall Street Journal account.By then, SoftBank had hired Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Cantor Fitzgerald LP to help search for new investors. Some SoftBank executives were surprised by Cantor’s involvement, as the New York-based bank had little experience sourcing investments for initiatives like the Vision Fund. But Cantor’s president since 2017 has been former Deutsche Bank co-CEO Anshu Jain, a onetime boss and childhood friend of Misra’s.The Saudis have held off committing capital to a second Vision Fund, and Son this week said he had to stop raising money because of difficulties with WeWork and other investments. SoftBank stepped in to save WeWork last year after its failed initial public offering and put Claure in charge of turning the business around. But the coronavirus pandemic has exacerbated the challenges of drawing people to co-working spaces.“Vision Fund’s results are not something to be proud of,” Son said at somber press conference in Tokyo on Monday, with reporters and analysts calling in remotely because of the pandemic. “If the results are bad, you can’t raise money from investors.”Elliott, the fund run by billionaire Paul Singer, has pressed for changes, and Misra has been involved in those talks, according to people with knowledge of the discussions. He has met frequently with Singer’s son Gordon, the people said. But two people familiar with Elliott’s operations say the firm has asked SoftBank to get to the bottom of Misra’s alleged involvement in campaigns against his colleagues and has expressed dismay at the infighting among top managers and how much of that spills into the press. A spokeswoman for Elliott denies that the company is pushing for an investigation, and a SoftBank spokesman said Son hasn’t received such a request.SoftBank’s board probed who was behind the campaigns against Arora and Sama but didn’t uncover any definitive evidence, people with knowledge of the matter said. While the company has said it’s looking into the most recent Wall Street Journal allegations, several senior executives have downplayed their significance. Ron Fisher, a SoftBank director, called the February story “another example of people anonymously spreading misinformation and innuendo about our executives,” according to an email to Vision Fund managing partners.SoftBank's board has lost several of its most independent voices in recent years, the kind of directors who could question his decisions. Shigenobu Nagamori, the outspoken founder of motor maker Nidec Corp., stepped down in 2017. Fast Retailing Co. CEO Tadashi Yanai, who had been on the board since 2001 and was a rare voice of dissent, left at the end of 2019. On the same day SoftBank announced its record losses this week, Alibaba co-founder Jack Ma announced he would leave the board too, after 13 years. Two new independent directors were nominated — Cadence Design Systems Inc. CEO Lip-Bu Tan and Waseda University professor Yuko Kawamoto.Misra’s fate is ultimately intertwined with the Vision Fund, which Son once declared would be the foundation of a new SoftBank but now risks becoming one of his worst missteps. The fund declared quarter after quarter of profit after its inception in 2017, as it marked up the value of startups and booked paper profits. But since the WeWork fiasco, it has lost all of that money and more. The structure of the fund — Misra’s invention — will create another squeeze. About $40 billion of the money raised from outside investors is in the form of preferred shares that pay about 7% a year. The idea is that SoftBank would see extra profits if the Vision Fund hit it big, but it also means losses are amplified. Venture capital funds typically don’t have such liabilities to avoid the risks of such a volatile business. Misra has been on something of a publicity tour recently to defend his reputation, although he declined to comment for this story. In an interview with CNBC published in March, he said that the Vision Fund’s mistakes are surfacing early and its portfolio will be redeemed in 18 to 24 months. “I’m so, so positive I’ll prove people wrong,” he said. He also vowed he wouldn’t leave the fund. “I owe it to my stakeholders, my LPs, my employees to be here for the journey,” he said. The Vision Fund spokesman denied Misra said the portfolio would recover that quickly. In the end, what SoftBank decides to do about Misra, if anything, depends on Son. His business is under intense pressure, putting even his deepest loyalties to the test. “At a company like SoftBank, where the founder runs the business, that person has to take responsibility for the ethics and the standards for behavior within the company,” said Parissa Haghirian, a professor of international management at Sophia University in Tokyo who specializes in Japanese corporate culture. “If you are not clear about this, then everybody sets their own rules.” For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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