Indian businesses had a poised investment flow from the beginning of the year. With $2 billion investments, SoftBank Vision Fund has been a pillar of support to many existing and new companies in India. The company said that it would back companies with growth and vision that adapt the digital transformation.
On the global end, the vision fund invested 15-18 billion, and Indian companies have bagged 15 to 20% of that value. The recent investments have been Meesho with $300 million and $250 million investments in Zeta and $450 million investment in Swiggy. The software-as-a-service (SaaS)-based digital adoption startup Whatfix, and OfBusiness, a business-to-business e-commerce platform, received $100-150 million.
The Vision fund backed the companies due to growth seen in a technology-led rally in the US public markets, and the fourth quarter ended March 31, 2021, $46 billion profit. SoftBank is listed as the largest technology investor in the world, with historical profits in FY21. It outperformed by crossing the Japanese companies and stood as the third-largest profit declared last year in the world.
The portfolio companies like DoorDash Inc- a US-based food delivery app, South Korea’s Coupang, and second-hand car trading platform Auto1 Group had successful IPOs leading to tremendous gains.
Delhivery, Policybazaar, and Paytm will go public by the end of this year or the first quarter of 2022.
The bank invests in innovative vision and technology for a more extended period, like Paytm. The US markets have seen higher volumes of SPACs—or special purpose acquisition companies. SoftBank made purposeful derivation from these vehicles to opt for successful mergers. Although some companies like the Indian grocery retailer Grofers and logistics tech platform Delhivery ventured the SPAC deals, they didn’t materialize.
Misra said the global stock markets would fluctuate shortly, but the technology investments in the private market will perform strongly due to the high liquidity. And concerning the Indian public markets, it has been resilient.
The bank invested in 95 companies in the second Vision Fund, which outpaced the 92 companies from the $100 billion Vision Fund 1 launched in 2017. Bengaluru-based ed-tech startup Unacademy and omnichannel eyewear brand Lenskart are part of India’s Vision Fund 2 portfolio. Additionally, SoftBank Vision Fund 2 proposed investment in Flipkart of a $1.2-1.5 billion round that will appraise the company’s valuation to $28 billion.
SoftBank Vision Fund CEO Rajeev Misra said, “we will continue to invest if we find the right opportunities. We anticipate investing a similar size in the remainder of this year.”