SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son’s $100 billion chip project propels stock surge

SoftBank Group Corporation’s stock rose as founder Masayoshi Son considers the creation of a $100 billion chip venture that would supply AI-enabling semiconductors. Shares in the Tokyo-based tech investor gained as much as 3.2 percent after Bloomberg News reported the 66-year-old billionaire is seeking funding for a foray into AI chips to compete with Nvidia Corp. The project, code-named Izanagi, would be aimed at building an AI chip venture that would complement Arm Holdings Plc, the chip design company in which SoftBank holds a majority stake. In one scenario, Son is considering SoftBank providing $30 billion, with $70 billion possibly coming from institutions in the Middle East.

If successful, the chip project would comprise roughly a fifth of the global semiconductor market. Named after the Japanese god of creation and life, the project reflects Son’s unfettered enthusiasm for the coming of artificial general intelligence. SoftBank shares have gained about 30% in the last 10 trading days, with a surge in Arm’s shares of more than 80%. In AI, Son now sees an opportunity to create a company rivalling the Magnificent Seven stocks.

SoftBank had ¥6.2 trillion ($41 billion) in cash and cash equivalents as of Dec. 31, thanks to a rebound in global equity markets. Its balance sheet got a boost from a windfall in T-Mobile US Inc. shares, worth almost $8 billion, as well as from the company’s 90% stake in Arm.

After a series of setbacks in his start-up investments, the Japanese entrepreneur has seen Arm blossom into a solid success. This opportunity is reflective of Son’s continued enthusiasm for innovative technology.

The creation of this venture would mark a significant turning point in the global semiconductor market. SoftBank’s potential to dominate and rival the largest companies within the industry has sparked optimism among investors and analysts alike. The project is a testament of Son’s visionary leadership and the potential it holds for the future of technology. With an increasing demand for AI-enabling semiconductors, SoftBank’s investment in this venture could not only solidify its position in the market but also redefine the future of AI technology.

About the author

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *