The past year's profits of the Japanese holding company SoftBank Group have mostly been wiped out amid the continuous losses incurred by its tech-oriented investment fund. According to the company's released report on Wednesday, the operating income for its latest quarter had dropped by around 99 percent when compared to the same period a year earlier.
Softbank's reported an operating income of around $23.6 million for its latest quarter ending in December. The highest loss contributor for the quarter was the company's $100 billion Vision Fund, reporting an operating loss of $2 billion for the three month period. The majority of the losses from CEO Masayoshi Son's ambitious startup tech fun came from unrealized profits and expenses related to both Uber and WeWork.
Son revealed during the company's earnings call that around 30 companies under its Vision Fund had reported profits, while "30 or so" other companies reported losses. The biggest gainers among the listed companies in the portfolio included cancer diagnostics firm Guardant Health, which netted $1.9 billion for the tech fund. Unfortunately, that gain was mostly wiped out by the losses incurred by the fund with Uber, which recorded a loss of $1.06 billion.
The release of its earnings report is expected to pull down the company's shares, which had surged by more than 12 percent in Tokyo following news of the merger approval between T-Mobile and Sprint. Softbank owns nearly 85 percent of Sprint, shares it purchased more than a decade ago.
The company's founder acknowledged the poor performance and stated that it has already spooked potential investors for its next tech-focused investment fund. The executive was, of course, referring to the company's planned Vision Fund 2, which it had announced last year.
Softbank previously stated that it was able to sign a number of agreements with more than a dozen investors interested in joining the planned $108 billion-fund. Among the biggest investors that have expressed interest in joining include Apple, Standard Chartered, Microsoft, and Foxconn Technology.
Son stated on Wednesday that some of the investors have expressed concerns over the profitability of the new fund given the dismal performance of Uber's share prices and WeWork's failed initial public offering (IPO).
Uber's stocks have so stayed at around 8 percent below its original IPO price. Softbank also spent around $10 billion to bail out WeWork after its failed IPO. Due to the unfortunate performance of the first Vision Fund, Son stated that they could be decreasing the size of the next tech fund to lessen concerns and anxiety amongst its investors.