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SoftBank to invest $1bn in fintech firm Wirecard

SoftBank to invest $1bn in fintech firm Wirecard

Mubasher: SoftBank plans to invest $1 billion in German digital-finance company Wirecard, as the Japanese tech giant seeks to bulk up in digital payments.

Wirecard will raise the capital by issuing convertible bonds with a five-year maturity, and will sell them exclusively to SoftBank.

The transaction, subject to Wirecard’s shareholders, includes a strategic partnership and a 5.6% stake in the firm. If approved, the transaction could make the Japanese conglomerate the second biggest shareholder in Wirecard.

The agreement is an additional step in SoftBank’s transformation from a telecommunications operator to a technology investment company.

For Wirecard, the partnership would pave an access to Asian markets and a chance to regain confidence following allegations of accounting misconduct in its Singapore office.

An investigation by the Financial Times (FT) concluded that Wirecard, one of Europe's most valuable financial-technology companies, used forged and backdated contracts to inflate revenue.

An outside law company investigating the claims found evidence of the accounting misdeeds, but cleared Wirecard’s headquarter of any wrongdoing.