A deal giving Softbank 15% of Uber has officially closed. Softbank has made its initial investment in Uber, providing the company with $1.25 billion in new cash. The purchase of stock shares from existing investors will happen throughout the day.
“We’re proud to have SoftBank, Dragoneer, and the entire consortium in the Uber family. This is a great outcome for our shareholders, employees, and customers, strengthening Uber’s governance as we double down on our technology investments and continue to bring our services to more people in more places around the world,” says Uber spokesman Matt Kallman.
The deal with Softbank also ushers in changes to Uber’s board, which will expand to accommodate a total of 17 members. Rajeev Misra, chief executive of SoftBank Investment Advisers and director at SoftBank Group Corp, and Marcelo Claure, CEO of Sprint, will be joining. Another four seats have yet to be claimed. As a part of the new structure, super voting rights, currently held by former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick and other early board members, will be eliminated. Benchmark Capital has also promised to shelve its lawsuit against Kalanick.
The news marks an important step for CEO Dara Khosrowshahi, who is trying to move Uber toward a more stable future and an initial public offering in 2019. The company has taken a series of hits this year, not least of all in its valuation, which Bloomberg reports sits at $54 billion.