Alibaba shares tumble after SoftBank reportedly sells most of its stake.
The Chinese e-commerce giant’s shares were sold by SoftBank via prepaid forward contracts for approximately $7.2 billion, according to a Wednesday study of the corporate records by The Financial Times. According to the article, SoftBank will only continue to have a 3.8% share in Alibaba, which has a market value of close to $250 billion due to its sales.
Three years ago, SoftBank maintained a nearly 25% stake in Alibaba, worth over $100 billion.
Founder and CEO of the Japanese technology conglomerate and holding company, Masayoshi Son, said at the time that SoftBank would operate in a “defense” mode and be more “conservative.”
In 2000, Son invested $20 million in Alibaba, helping the e-commerce startup develop into one of the largest internet businesses in the world.
Alibaba announced in March that it would divide into six business units, with each entity having the ability to raise its own money and possibly go public. The action was “designed to unlock shareholder value and foster market competitiveness,” Alibaba stated in a statement.