Despite Massive Losses Last Year, SoftBank Vision Fund Head’s Pay Was Doubled

Even as SoftBank Vision Fund reported a in the past business year, the total pay for the fund’s head, Rajeev Misra, more than double in the same period to reach a total of 1.6 billion yen.

The growth in the pay for Misra was second to only to what the fund paid as remuneration for the SoftBank Group Chief Operating Officer Marcelo Claure whose annual package was increased by 17 per cent to 2.1 billion yen.

In contrast, a regulatory filing by the SoftBank showed that while the company has been paying such huge salaries and pay packets to its foreign executives, the remuneration that Softbank CEO Masayoshi Son took home last year was at 209 million yen which was 9 per dent lower than what he had been given by the company a year ago.

A massive $18 billion shortfall at the $100 billion Vision Fund was the primary reasons behind the huge annual operating loss reported by SoftBank for the its last fiscal year. The Vision fund has been investing in tech startups all over the world and is a major investor in startups such as the United States based office sharing firm WeWork and the ride-hailing app operator Uber. Both of these companies have failed to perform well in recent years with Uber’s share price dropping significantly since it went public last year and WeWork’s valuation decreasing significantly from the time SoftBank had invested last in the company. Both the company are also loss making ones.

The yearly paycheck was reduced by 80 per cent to 680 million yen for vice chairman Ron Fisher, who till had been the most highly paid executive in the previous business year for the entire SoftBank group and was the principal architect of the disastrous WeWork investment. SoftBank has recently taken over control of WeWork through further investments and the company’s restructuring is currently being looked after by SoftBank COO Claure who has been made the executive chairman of the office space sharing company.

SoftBank’s most recent regulatory filing also highlighted the growing dependence on Japan’s big three banks of the heavily indebted tech conglomerate. The filing showed that the firm had more than doubled its borrowing from top lender Mizuho Financial Group to 1.39 trillion yen in the fiscal year ended March 31. During the year, the total debt of SoftBank group increased by more than 1 trillion yen to 2.45 trillion yen when the loans from Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group and Sumitomo Mitsui Financial Group are combined.

In recent months, SoftBank gas resorted to a programme of asset sales because of its deteriorating performance which included monetization of its shares in the Chiense e-commerce giant Alibaba worth a total of 1.25 trillion yen. The company is using this money to buy back shares to help prop up its share price and to shore up the balance sheet of the group.

Earlier this month Son told investors in May that tech unicorns have plunged into the “valley of the coronavirus”.

(Adapted from NDTV.com)

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