Softbank sells remaining stake in SBI Holdings

03 Aug 2006

(Kyodo News International via NewsEdge) Internet and telecom conglomerate Softbank said its group ended its capital ties with SBI Holdings, the holding company of the SBI Group firms, via the sale of its remaining 19.2% stake in SBI Holdings to Goldman Sachs Japan.
Softbank did not disclose the value of the sale of the 2.13 million shares. The deal came a day after the Softbank group sold 1.11 million SBI Holdings shares for 50 billion yen, slashing its stake from 26.7% to 19.2%.
SBI Holdings, the parent of SBI Trade Securities, bought back most of the discharged shares.
Softbank officials said part of the proceeds will be used to improve its mobile phone service business, acquired from Vodafone K.K., formerly the Japanese arm of Britain's Vodafone Group.
Softbank wants to catch up with its two rivals in the Japanese mobile services market, NTT DoCoMo, and KDDI via its enhanced mobile operations, officials said.
In January 2005, SBI Holdings was removed from the group of Softbank subsidiaries whose financial results are consolidated with those of Softbank itself.
But an SBI Holdings official said the company will continue some joint projects with the Softbank group, including the provision of securities-related information to a financial services Web site of Yahoo Japan, a Softbank Group firm, without terminating those projects.

c 2006 Kyodo News International

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