The paperwork’s done! The long-anticipated SoftBank Group investment into Uber has been agreed upon, a spokesperson confirms to TechCrunch.
We’ve been provided the following statement.
“We’ve entered into an agreement with a consortium led by SoftBank and Dragoneer on a potential investment. We believe this agreement is a strong vote of confidence in Uber’s long-term potential. Upon closing, it will help fuel our investments in technology and our continued expansion at home and abroad, while strengthening our corporate governance.”
Uber has not yet elaborated on plans, but we’ve been told that it includes a $1 billion investment in the company at the last private valuation of nearly $70 billion. A source with knowledge of the deal told TechCrunch that the documents label this as an extension of its last Series G round.
The group led by SoftBank and Dragoneer Investment Group is also planning to invest a much larger amount by buying up to $9 billion in Uber shares from employees and other shareholders, likely bringing its total ownership to at least 14% of the company. These shares are expected to be purchased at a lower valuation, that has not been determined.
We reported earlier that the tender offer is slated to launch November 28 and would continue for about 20 business days. This is likely to be the largest secondary transaction in history, with shareholders selling billions of dollars worth of shares.
Technically, the deal will only be done once enough Uber shareholders sign up to sell shares. It is a package deal and the $1 billion investment in Uber is contingent on the tender offer getting finalized.
But it hasn’t been easy to track down all of Uber’s many shareholders, including venture capitalists and former employees. The company plans to take out newspaper ads to help spread the word that the tender offer is launching soon.
We’re told that thousands of current employees will also be eligible to sell shares.
Apart from gathering a list of shareholders, part of the delay stemmed from determining Kalanick’s role at the company, which is now led by former Expedia CEO, Dara Khosrowshahi.
If the deal gets done, investor Benchmark Capital has agreed to drop its lawsuit against former CEO Travis Kalanick. The lawsuit related to his power to appoint three board seats, including his own.
He recently appointed Ursula Burns and John Thain to those seats. Should one of them give up their spot, Kalanick will now require a board vote to appoint a replacement, as long as the SoftBank deal is completed.
Cooley was the law firm working with Uber on the deal. SoftBank has been working with Morrison Foerster, known as MoFo. The Nasdaq Private Market is processing the proposed tender offer.
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