Softbank Changes Name of Vision Fund Adviser

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What’s in the name, SB Investment Advisers? That’s the new name for Softbank Vision Advisers, based upon filings on April 21, 2017. Between incorporating the original Vision Advisers in November 2016 and now, Softbank purchased another investment adviser, Fortress Investment Group.

Softbank’s Fortress acquisition reunites Rajeev Misra with his former employer; Mr. Misra worked briefly at Fortress and now works for SB Investment Advisers. So may be the new name is saying, Mr. Misra will manage more than just the Vision Fund, but all of Softbank’s investments.

GS Banker Joins Softbank Vision Fund

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Fifty year old Frenchman, and now ex-GS employee, Saleh Romeih officially joins Softbank Vision Advisers.

On March 31, 2017, Mr. Romeih became a director of Softbank Vision Advisers, the unit managing the soon to be $100 billion fund, as disclosed in filings made available on Tuesday.

With the announcement, Goldman Sachs will be losing the head of its securities unit for the Middle East and North Africa. Mr. Romeih will also need to update his LinkedIn profile:

 

 

Softbank, London Calling

It’s not on a press release, but Mr. Alok Sama has resigned, effective January 10, 2017. Mr. Sama is no longer a director of the entity managing the Softbank Vision Fund. Per Softbank’s initial press release:

The Fund will be managed in the United Kingdom by a subsidiary of SBG and will deploy capital from SBG and investment partners.

That’s indeed true. On November 25, 2016, an entity called the Softbank Vision Advisers Ltd. was incorporated in England. Listed on the corporate filings as directors were Rajeev Nisra, Alok Sama, and Jonathan Bullock or “JB”.

After Mr. Sama’s resignation, there are only two acting directors left: Mr. Nisra and Mr. Bullock. Here’s another interesting fact: Mr. Bullock doesn’t live in London, but the United States. Specifically, Mr. Bullock is based in San Franciso at the office of Softbank Group International. 

Mr. Bullock is already on the boards of Ola, Snapdeal, and Housing.com, after the departure last year of Nikesh Arora. Per his Linkedin page, “JB” also  “ensure our business runs effectively outside of Japan, and externally with a number of our portfolio companies“.

So while not in London, Mr. Bullock may be the Fund’s man in Silicon Valley looking for the next deal. Who knows, “JB” may have already been responsible for the Apple, Ellison, Qualcomm investments in the Vision Fund.