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For A Tech Investor, SoftBank Has Placed A Ton Of Money Into Real Estate

SoftBank

When Japanese technology firm SoftBank announced it would be raising $90B or more for its Vision fund the emphasis was on making big bets in the technologies that would define the future.

There was little indication that a massive part of its investment strategy would focus on real estate. In the past two years, SoftBank has invested more than $10B in real estate and real estate-related firms, through the Vision fund and its own balance sheet.

Here are its key investments.

WeWork's offices at 20 West Kinzie, Chicago
An interior of a WeWork office

WeWork

SoftBank is one of the largest and most recent investors in flexible workspace giant WeWork. In August it invested $4.4B in WeWork, including $1.4B to fund the company’s expansion in Asia. The investment valued WeWork at $20B.

Katerra

In January, SoftBank invested $865M in Katerra, the startup looking to shake up the construction sector with processes like factory-led construction and a vertically integrated business structure including design and procurement. The investment valued Katerra at $3B.

Computer, technology, big data, laptop

Compass

In December SoftBank invested $450M in online residential real estate sales and rental platform Compass. The investment valued Compass at $2.2B, making it one of the largest PropTech companies around.

Fortress

In February 2017, SoftBank bought alternative investment fund manager Fortress for $3.3B. A big slug of Fortresses assets under management are in real estate in the U.S., Europe and Asia.

Cell tower, AT&T cell tower, Cell tower REITs

Lendlease telecoms JV

In October, SoftBank and Lendlease ponied up $200M each to invest in cellphone towers across the U.S. That initial investment will buy 8,000 towers, with plans to grow the JV further.

Reonomy

At the smaller end of the scale, SoftBank was one of the investors in a $16M funding round for real estate data analytics firm Reonomy.