Since late 2021, SoftBank Group has been realigning its investment focus, steering away from traditional venture capital towards sectors like artificial intelligence and semiconductors.

This shift has involved the sale of significant assets from its Vision Fund portfolio, impacting companies like Coupang and DoorDash, and includes the return of Arm Holdings to SoftBank’s direct control in 2023. The reorientation follows reduced investment pace and staffing cuts at the fund.

Masayoshi Son, motivated by Arm’s successful market debut valuing it at US$106 billion, contemplates further deep investments in the semiconductor industry, which could rival giants like Nvidia. This change in direction reflects a broader strategy reset, moving away from the Vision Fund’s initial aggressive investment model, which focused on substantial funding for high-potential startups, to more targeted, strategic interventions in technology infrastructure.

As the Vision Fund transitions away from its high-profile investment operations, SoftBank is ramping up its financial reserves, boasting a cash pile that significantly increased over the past two years.

The restructured investment strategy has seen more than US$6 billion in asset disposals by the Vision Funds within a fiscal year, underscoring a pivot to potentially transformative sectors like generative AI, backed by substantial financial resources.