SoftBank Pepper robot

The affordable robot assistant of the future is already here

By on June 5, 2014 at 1:58 PM.

The affordable robot assistant of the future is already here

SoftBank CEO and Sprint chairman Masayoshi Son has become something of a maverick. He said he bought Sprint because “I am a man, and every man wants to be number one, not number two or number three.” He also convinced Steve Jobs to give him exclusivity for the iPhone in Japan before Apple had even announced the device, and before Son had bought the mobile carrier SoftBank.

Now, he wants to sell you a $2,000 robot. More →

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Home Internet Service

Almost one-third of U.S. households have no choice for broadband Internet service

By on March 14, 2014 at 8:45 AM.

Almost one-third of U.S. households have no choice for broadband Internet service

Nearly one-third of households in the United States have either no choice for home broadband Internet service, or no options at all. The frightening statistic comes from a presentation given to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce this week by SoftBank CEO Mayoshi Son, and it cited data provided by the Federal Communications Commission this past December. More →

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SoftBank Supercell Investment

Why is a Japanese carrier paying $1.5 billion for half of a Finnish app vendor?

By on October 15, 2013 at 10:20 AM.

Why is a Japanese carrier paying $1.5 billion for half of a Finnish app vendor?

Japanese carrier SoftBank and GungHo just paid $1.5 billion for a 51% stake of Supercell. What the heck is going on? Valuing Supercell at $3 billion is actually a lowball. Supercell has consistently generated more revenue than “Candy Crush Saga” creator King in recent months. Supercell has cracked a very difficult market in Japan, with “Clash of Clans” bouncing around Japanese top-10 iPhone sales charts since last June. Yet King is expected to generate $5 billion from its imminent IPO, even though “Candy Crush Saga” never broke out in Japan. More →

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SoftBank Credit Downgraded

Sprint merger expected to close this week as SoftBank is downgraded to junk

By on July 8, 2013 at 12:10 PM.

Sprint merger expected to close this week as SoftBank is downgraded to junk

SoftBank’s credit has been downgraded following the FCC’s approval of its acquisitions of Sprint and Clearwire, which SoftBank said it expects to close on July 10th. Standard & Poor’s cut the company’s credit rating from a BBB grade to a BB+ junk rating, Bloomberg reported. The agency citied SoftBank’s “exposure to intense competition in the U.S. market,” which is “unlikely to subside substantially in the next two to three years.” It noted, however, that it expects Sprint’s “operating performance to improve gradually” due to cost reductions and “other merger benefits.” A lower credit rating means there is a higher chance a company will default on its loans, which ultimately raises borrowing costs. Sprint shareholders last month agreed to SoftBank’s proposal of $21.6 billion in cash and stock for an 80% stake in the company.

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Sprint SoftBank Clearwire Deals

FCC approves SoftBank merger with Sprint and Clearwire

By on July 5, 2013 at 4:05 PM.

FCC approves SoftBank merger with Sprint and Clearwire

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission on Friday approved SoftBank’s acquisition of Sprint. The agency also gave Sprint the green light to purchase the remaining 49% of Clearwire it did not already own. Sprint shareholders previously approved SoftBank’s offer of $21.6 billion in cash and stock for an 80% stake in the company. The carrier’s deal to acquire the rest of Clearwire will give current Clearwire shareholders $5 per share and will value the company at approximately $14 billion. Clearwire shareholders are scheduled to vote on Sprint’s proposal on July 8th, and Sprint said it believes both transactions will close later this month. The company’s press release follows below. More →

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Sprint SoftBank Merger FCC Approval

Sprint-SoftBank merger reportedly on track for quick FCC approval

By on July 3, 2013 at 7:30 PM.

Sprint-SoftBank merger reportedly on track for quick FCC approval

Long-struggling wireless carrier Sprint is about to get a much-needed dose of good news. Unnamed sources tell Bloomberg that a majority of commissioners at the Federal Communications Commission support SoftBank’s $21.6 billion acquisition of Sprint, thus paving the way for Sprint to have the investment resources it needs to compete with rivals Verizon and AT&T. Bloomberg’s sources also say that the FCC’s approval will cover Sprint’s full acquisition of similarly troubled wireless wholesaler Clearwire, which will give Sprint a large bounty of spectrum that it can use to expand its LTE network throughout the United States. Sprint shareholders approved the SoftBank merger last week so the FCC’s final approval is the last big hurdle that the companies need to formally finish their merger, which SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son has projected will be completed this month.

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Sprint SoftBank Merger FCC Approval

FCC looks set to sign off on Sprint-SoftBank merger

By on June 28, 2013 at 9:35 PM.

FCC looks set to sign off on Sprint-SoftBank merger

It has taken a while but SoftBank looks like it’s finally about to acquire Sprint. The Hill reports that the Federal Communications Commission appears poised to sign off on both SoftBank’s acquisition of Sprint, and on Sprint’s acquisition of wireless wholesaler Clearwire. With those two acquisitions in place, Sprint will have both the strong financial backing and the strong spectrum position it needs to challenge AT&T and Verizon. Sprint’s shareholders approved the SoftBank merger just three days ago so the FCC’s final approval is really the last hurdle that the companies need to formally finish their merger, which SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son has projected will be completed in July.

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Sprint SoftBank Merger Approved

Sprint shareholders approve SoftBank merger

By on June 25, 2013 at 11:50 AM.

Sprint shareholders approve SoftBank merger

Sprint shareholders on Tuesday voted in favor of SoftBank’s merger bid, which amounts to $21.6 billion in cash and stock for an 80% stake in the carrier. Sprint investors will have the option to receive $7.65 in cash or one share of “new Sprint common stock” for each old share of Sprint. The company noted that the deal received “overwhelmingly” support from shareholders, with roughly 98% voting in favor of the proposal. SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son previously said the he expects the deal between to two companies to close in early July. Sprint’s press release follows below. More →

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SoftBank-Sprint Merger Closing

SoftBank CEO expects Sprint deal to close in early July

By on June 21, 2013 at 10:30 PM.

SoftBank CEO expects Sprint deal to close in early July

SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son is confident that his company’s deal to acquire Sprint will close early next month, Reuters reported. Dish Network was originally looking to counter SoftBank’s offer, but the company abandoned its bid earlier this week to focus on acquiring ClearWire. That effort might not work out either. The pressure from Dish, however, forced SoftBank to revise its offer for Sprint earlier this month. The company increased its bid by 7.5% from $20.1 billion to $21.6 billion in cash and stock. Son noted that Dish’s offer had the company worried and exploring alternative options like acquiring T-Mobile, but the executive now believes that with Dish out of the picture, the deal between the two companies will close in early July. Sprint shareholders are scheduled to vote on SoftBank’s offer on June 25th.

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Sprint Acquisition SoftBank

SoftBank cleared for Sprint takeover as Dish abandons bid

By on June 19, 2013 at 7:50 AM.

SoftBank cleared for Sprint takeover as Dish abandons bid

Efforts to acquire Sprint have been a long and arduous fiasco for SoftBank, but the Japan-based carrier moved one step closer to completing the deal on Tuesday evening. Following SoftBank’s revised offer for Sprint that would see its bid increased to $21.6 billion, Dish announced that it is abandoning the race and will not revise its current offer, which is not expected to be accepted. Dish had previously offered a total of $25.5 billion for Sprint, including $17.3 billion in cash and $8.2 billion in stock, but the SoftBank deal is seen as the more promising option. According to Reuters, Dish said it declined to revise its offer because it did not want to match the break-up fees offered in the SoftBank proposal. More →

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Sprint SoftBank Merger Revised Offer

SoftBank responds to Dish with increased offer to acquire Sprint

By on June 11, 2013 at 10:00 PM.

SoftBank responds to Dish with increased offer to acquire Sprint

SoftBank on Monday announced a revised offer to acquire Sprint. The company increased its bid by 7.5% from $20.1 billion to $21.6 billion in cash and stock. SoftBank notes that $4.5 billion in cash has been reallocated to give Sprint shareholders $5.50 per share, up from $4.02. The carrier was pressured to increase its bid for Sprint after Dish offered $25.5 billion to acquire the company. SoftBank’s CEO repeatedly insisted that his company’s proposal offers the best value for Sprint, however a number of influential shareholders had called for a higher offer. The company’s board of directors has approved the new offer and given Dish until June 18th to present its “best and final offer.” Sprint shareholders are scheduled to vote on the SoftBank deal in two weeks.

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SoftBank T-Mobile Acquisition

SoftBank could be interested in T-Mobile if Sprint deal fails

By on June 7, 2013 at 5:20 PM.

SoftBank could be interested in T-Mobile if Sprint deal fails

Japanese carrier SoftBank is reportedly interested in making a bid for T-Mobile as a potential backup plan in case its deal with Sprint falls through. SoftBank’s $20.1 billion bid for Sprint is being challenged by Dish. Reuters is reporting that SoftBank is in talks with Deutsche Telekom AG, the parent company of T-Mobile, about a possible deal to acquire the U.S. wireless provider. The talks between the two companies are said to have “intensified” in the weeks following Dish’s counteroffer for Sprint. Deutsche Telekom owns 74% of T-Mobile USA, which is said to be valued at $15 billion. The report comes shortly before Sprint shareholders are scheduled to approve or reject SoftBank’s offer on June 12th.

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Sprint SoftBank Merger Approved

Sprint-SoftBank merger receives security clearance

By on May 29, 2013 at 9:30 AM.

Sprint-SoftBank merger receives security clearance

Sprint on Wednesday confirmed that it has received the go-ahead from the U.S. government to merge with Japanese carrier SoftBank. The Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) had been investigating the proposed acquisition to ensure that it doesn’t pose a risk to national security. The government was worried about the use of telecom equipment from ZTE and Huawei, however SoftBank’s CEO confirmed there are no plans to use Chinese equipment. Sprint and SoftBank have entered into a National Security Agreement with the U.S. government and now only await the green light from the Federal Communications Commission. According to The Wall Street Journal, the deal requires the two companies to have a four-member national security committee, which will include a security director on Sprint’s board of directors that has the power to veto equipment purchases. Sprint’s press release follows below. More →

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