BREAKING: SoftBank hires Goldman Sachs to sell off data unit

Softbank

After his misfortune with WeWork and a record loss in the kitty, SoftBank Group Corp. has hired Goldman Sachs to sell data-and-device-management unit Treasure Data.

According to a report by Bloomberg citing people familiar with the matter, SoftBank is seeking a price of about $1 billion.

SoftBank earlier this month said it will separate the business from its chipmaking company Arm Ltd. While part of Arm, Treasure Data grew but required a level of investment that limited Arm’s ability to spend on its own growth initiatives.

A $1 billion sale would be roughly 66% more than Arm paid for Treasure Data in 2018. SoftBank thinks that price is achievable, according to the people, who asked not to be identified speaking on a private deal process. SoftBank’s plans could change and it may still decide to keep the asset.

SoftBank, led by billionaire founder Masayoshi Son, reported a record operating loss in May after writing down investments in companies such as WeWork and Uber Technologies Inc. SoftBank stock plunged in March, but rebounded sharply after share repurchases and wins on other bets. The Japanese conglomerate raised at least $14.8 billion last month selling some of its stake in T-Mobile US Inc., part of a broader $42 billion push to unload assets and pay off debt.

Treasure Data was purchased for about $600 million and integrated into Arm to try to speed up the adoption of “internet of things” technology. More devices are being connected to the internet and data is being collected and analyzed. The idea was that these gadgets would be based on Arm silicon, while Treasure Data sold software to help companies connect and manage new pieces of hardware. The company lists customers such as Subaru Corp. on its website.

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