Softbank has invested huge sums of capital into ride hailing services over the years, beginning with a round of $210M in Ola in 2014 to $9.25B in Uber in 2018.

Softbank is the biggest shareholder of Uber, and has also invested significantly in Didi Chuxing in China, Grab in Southeast Asia, and 99 in Brazil. It also helps Didi Chuxing invest in other ride-hailing companies across geographical regions.

With such a heavy footprint in ride hailing services around the world, Softbank deserves the title of ‘King of Global Ride Hailing Industry’ right?

The real heavyweight

Saudi Arabia’s sovereign wealth fund has serious bets on Uber

How about Public Investment Fund (PIF), the sovereign wealth fund of Saudi Arabia?

As one of the largest sovereign wealth funds in the world, PIF had invested $3.5B directly into Uber, before Softbank’s massive injection in 2018.

Also PIF is the biggest backer of the Softbank Vision Fund, investing up to $45B over 5 years.

We are not sure about the exact power dynamics between Masayoshi Son and His Royal Highness – who influences whose decisions more?

Though perhaps PIF, instead of Softbank, is the de facto king of Global Ride Hailing Industry?

There is a future beyond oil after all.

Thanks for reading The Low Down (TLD), the blog by the team at Momentum Works. Got a different perspective or have a burning opinion to share? Let us know at hello@mworks.asia.

 

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