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SoftBank Sets Indicative Price For Mobile Unit IPO

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Japanese conglomerate SoftBank Group Corp. (SFTBF.PK) has set a single indicative price of 1,500 yen for its domestic telecoms unit IPO, instead of following the usual practice of giving a price range.

The per-share price remains unchanged from the estimate given by SoftBank earlier this month, when the company announced the launch of the IPO. The single indicative price also suggests that SoftBank is confident of obtaining the desired IPO price.

Brokerages had initially expressed concern whether there would be strong demand for the IPO, but have since said that they are seeing strong interest for the offering.

The shares are set to list on the Tokyo Stock Exchange on December 19, with their final price to be determined on December 10.

The IPO is potentially worth 2.4 trillion yen, or $21 billion. This would make it the world's biggest initial public offering or IPO after Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group's (BABA) $25 billion IPO in 2014.

SoftBank said earlier in November that it would sell 1.60 billion shares of SoftBank Corp. at a price of 1,500 yen each to raise 2.4 trillion yen. This will result in a market value for the mobile unit of 7.2 trillion yen, or $63 billion.

At that time, SoftBank said its price of 1,500 yen per share was tentative and a final decision will be taken on December 10. SoftBank will retain a 66.5 percent stake in the newly listed unit.

SoftBank Group expanded in Japan with telecommunications as its main business. However, under chief executive Masayoshi Son, it is now more of a technology investment company following the acquisition of U.S. mobile carrier Sprint Corp. (S) in 2013 and UK-based chip designer ARM Holdings plc (ARM.L, ARMH) in 2016, in addition to creating the $100 billion Vision Fund.

The company has also invested in ride-hailing company Uber Technologies and Alibaba.

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