SoftBank acquires a 20 percent stake in Uber

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While SoftBank played hardball with Uber, it promised investors it would cover the price difference for them if the final sale price came in over $33 a share, according to a clause in the documents detailing the terms of the agreement.

The group will buy most of the shares from early investors in a deal that values Uber at about $48bn (£35.7bn).

Uber hasn't had a great year. SoftBank and its co-investors are acquiring some of the company at a valuation of $48 billion. The deadline for tender offers was 8pm (GMT). Last month, Uber disclosed that it had covered up a security breach that had compromised the personal data of 57 million rider and driver accounts, and SoftBank was able to talk down the price of its investment.

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. Softbank will limit its stake to 15 percent, valuing Uber at a 30 percent discount of its most recent valuation of almost $70 billion. Benchmark is expected to drop its lawsuit against Uber founder Travis Kalanick, and the two board seats that SoftBank wield should help bring stability to the decision-making process, which in turn should allow new CEO Dara Khosrowshahi to focus on losing less money.

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The investment is poised to trigger several major organizational changes at Uber that were contingent on securing SoftBank's funding.

The price offered for the shares valued the firm at $48bn and was a discount to Uber's most recent fundraising round, but for some of the firm's earliest investors could provide a big payoff.

The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday that SoftBank wants to appoint to Uber's board Rajeev Misra, who runs the Vision Fund, and Marcelo Claure, the chief executive of Sprint.

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