SoftBank Vision Fund Chief Misra Likely To Be Son’s Successor

SoftBank Vision Fund Chief Misra Likely To Be Son’s Successor

Rajeev Misra, the chief executive officer of $93 Bn Vision Fund has been elevated to executive vice president of the Softbank board of directors. SoftBank launched Vision Fund in January 2017.

The move is being considered as a potential step in direction of becoming SoftBank chief Masayoshi Son’s successor – a position once hinted to be for ex-president at SoftBank Global- Nikesh Arora.

Misra was earlier elevated to SoftBank Group board in May 2017, along with other candidates including Marcelo Claure, President and CEO of Sprint Corporation, Simon Segars, CEO of ARM Holding Plc, Mark Schwartz, Senior Director of Goldman, Sachs and Co., and Yassir O Al-Rumayyan, Managing Director and Board Member of the Public Investment Fund (PIF) of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

As per media reports, Misra is among at least three senior executives who could succeed Son when he will step down.  The SoftBank Group has also promoted Marcelo Claure, chief operating officer, and former Goldman Sachs senior executive Katsunori Sago as executive vice presidents.

To be noted, Claure took over as COO in April this year, a role formerly occupied by Nikesh Arora, who left the company in 2016 amid severe accusations of conflicts of interest and a regulatory probe.

The appointments are subjected to be approval of shareholders at the upcoming Annual General Meeting to be held on June 20, 2018. Further, in response to a media query, a SoftBank spokesperson stated, “Son’s potential successors are not limited to these three, but they are among them.”

While the earlier bets of SoftBank in India incurred huge losses, Masayoshi Son recently made a successful exit from Flipkart, where it invested over $2 Bn last year against 23.6% stake in the company. The Indian ecommerce unicorn sold a majority 77% stake to the US retailer Walmart for $16 Bn, wherein SoftBank took a full exit.

In more than 12 months, the Vision fund has made investments of about $5 Bn which includes Indian companies such as Paytm, OYO, Flipkart and Ola. With Rajeev Misra climbing his way up to the SoftBank ladder, will his elevation prove fruitful to the Indian majors who are continuously reaping in billions from the Japanese conglomerate, will be something interesting to keep an eye on.

[The development was reported by ET.]

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