Peace Deal: Uber Board Paves the Way for Softbank Investment

Can ousted CEO Travis Kalanick live in peace with his rivals

Can ousted CEO Travis Kalanick live in peace with his rivals

Venture capital firm Benchmark, an early investor in Uber with a board seat, and Kalanick have reached an agreement over terms of the SoftBank investment, which could be worth up to $10 billion, according to two people familiar with the matter.

"We believe this agreement is a strong vote of confidence in Uber's long-term potential", it said. "Upon closing, it will help fuel our investments in technology and our continued expansion at home and overseas, while strengthening our corporate governance".

SoftBank would also be investing $1 billion directly in Uber as an extension of the last Series G round, at its last private valuation of almost $70 billion.

SoftBank is leading a consortium of investors that plan to invest $1 billion to $1.25 billion and buy up to 17 percent of existing shares from investors and employees in a secondary transaction.

SoftBank is said to want to own 14% of the company.

The purchase of existing shares will be conducted through a tender-offer process, which could take at least a month to finalize.

The move was announced shortly after reports emerged that its former CEO Travis Kalanick and an influential investor had buried the hatchet in a long feud that paved the way for the acquisition. When approached by a media house, Softbank declined to comment on the potential investment. Benchmark had alleged that Kalanick duped investors into allowing him to create three disputed board seats that it later wanted to delete, which action would dump Kalanick out of Uber altogether.

Scandal hit ride-sharing company Uber on Sunday said it entered into a deal to sell a stake to Japan's SoftBank as the firm looks to turn a new page ahead of its planned IPO by 2019.

Uber's spokesman indicated that if the deal is completed, the money will be used to expand the business further as the competition at home and overseas is increasing. It also reduced Kalanick's and Benchmark's influence on the board by removing special voting powers in two categories of stock held disproportionately by Kalanick.

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