SoftBank maintained a rising growth trajectory since it was started several decades ago. It has now embraced a new path of becoming one of the largest investment firms in the world with the acquisition of Fortress Investment Group, a global investment management firm. The Japanese company acquired Fortress for $3.3 billion but it is not going to alter the way the leading investment management firm operates. SoftBank made it clear it won’t interfere with Fortress’s management of assets amounting to billions of dollars.
This comes as good news for both parties. Fortress Investment Group thrives when it is given its space to decide on the path to take as well as avenues to pursue. After all, that’s part of the reason why SoftBank acquired the firm; effective and proven judgment over time.
SoftBank was started in 1981 by Masayoshi Son as a PC software wholesaler. It acquired a controlling interest in Yahoo in 1996 and its fate changed. Since then, SoftBank grew rapidly into a major player in the globe and it owns over 400 internet companies across the world. It developed a strong interest in tech startups.
On the other hand, Fortress Investment Group was founded by Randy Nardone and Wes Edens in 1998 and it is headquartered in New York City. It currently manages assets worth billions of dollars on behalf of over 1750 private investors as well as institutional clients all over the globe. The Japanese agreeing to not to have a say on how Fortress Investment Group manages its assets contributed to the successful closing of the deal.
SoftBank also paid a 39% premium to the share price to be able to close the deal successfully. SoftBank also had other transactions underway and they needed to be completed before completing the Fortress transaction. Additionally, the celebrated founder and Chief Executive Officer of SoftBank, Masayoshi Son, also put some behind-the-scenes efforts to make the deal a success by visiting Trump Tower and promising $50 billion to the United States. Consequently, his company earned a political good will to continue to pursue its avenues.
Fortress Investment Group was the first private equity firm in the US to be publicly traded. Wes Edens was recorded saying that becoming a private firm is a good thing and it will help them persue long-term goals.
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