SoftBank's Tender Bid For Uber Massively Successful

SoftBank's Tender Bid For Uber Massively Successful

SoftBank on Thursday completed a tender offer to buy those shares at a discounted valuation of $48 billion, according to sources.

The completion of the deal is the first significant achievement for Uber's new CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, who took over in August after an ugly year at the company defined by sexual harassment and discrimination allegations, executive misbehavior, lawsuits, and plenty of finger-pointing within the company's board room.

Kalanick stepped down in June following revelations that his company's culture had become toxic and encouraged sexism and inappropriate behavior.

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The deal will reportedly also install six new directors to Uber (two of them from SoftBank), and all of the company's investors will see increased voting rights.

The investor group is also buying about $1.25bn worth of new shares at a price that values the firm at nearly $70bn, a significantly higher price that is similar to what Uber shares fetched in its last fundraising round.

Erik Gordon, an entrepreneurship expert at the University of Michigan's Ross School of Business, told Reuters the stockholders did the smart thing. The closing of the deal will also mark the end of the company's supervoting share structure, moving the company to a "one share, one vote" system that further weakens the influence of early executives and shareholders. Two of those seats will go to SoftBank. He continued: "We have tremendous confidence in Uber's leadership and employees and are excited to support Uber as it continues to reinvent how people and goods are transported around the world". However some Uber investors were concerned the price SoftBank was offering was too low, according to Recode. Didi last week raised US$4 billion, including some investment from SoftBank.

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The investment comes after a year of troubles for Uber, including a lawsuit by Alphabet Inc's self-driving vehicle unit Waymo, that alleges trade secrets theft, and federal investigations that include possible bribery of foreign officials in Asian countries and the use of software to evade regulators.

Uber Technologies Inc said in September it was shutting down the auto-leasing business, which had heavy losses.

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