SoftBank Group Corp. has lined up chip maker Qualcomm Inc. as an investor in the Japanese firm’s new technology fund, helping the vast portfolio reach its US$100 billion target, according to people familiar with the matter, the Wall Street Journal reports.
San Diego-based Qualcomm has moved toward finalizing its commitment in recent days, the people said. It joins Apple Inc., which previously agreed to invest in the fund, the people said. The amounts to be invested could not be determined.
Together, the pair brings a Silicon Valley imprimatur to what would be one of the world’s largest pools of private capital.
SoftBank—the conglomerate whose chief executive, Masayoshi Son, has spoken of a coming technology revolution—plans to invest in next-generation technologies such as artificial intelligence and robotics.
The SoftBank Vision Fund was announced in October and thrust back in the public eye last month, when Son met with President-elect Donald Trump in New York and pledged to invest US$50 billion in the US and create thousands of jobs. That money is expected to come from the new fund.
The telecom company’s fund has gathered the US$100 billion in commitments it was seeking and is set to formally launch in the coming weeks, according to people familiar with the matter cited by the Journal.
SoftBank said when it announced the fund that it will contribute $25 billion of its own cash over the next five years. Saudi Arabia’s government fund has agreed to invest up to US$45 billion over the same period.
The Wall Street Journal reported Dec. 12 that Apple and the sovereign-wealth fund of Abu Dhabi have also discussed investing. Those negotiations have since advanced and are near being completed, people familiar with the matter said.
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