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SoftBank reaches $1.6 bil. settlement with WeWork founder, others

This April 16, 2019 file photo shows the logo of SoftBank Group Corp. in Tokyo. (Mainichi)

TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Japanese technology conglomerate SoftBank Group Corp. said Monday it will pay $1.6 billion to settle a legal dispute with the founder and directors of U.S. shared-office provider WeWork Inc.

    The legal battle stemmed from SoftBank's withdrawal in 2020 from a plan to buy $3 billion worth of shares from WeWork co-founder Adam Neumann and other investors. SoftBank said at the time the decision was made as predetermined conditions had not been met.

    "The settlement agreement is not an admission of liability or wrongdoing by (SoftBank Group) nor has there been any finding of liability by the court against SBG," SoftBank said in a press release.

    The settlement in a lawsuit by Neumann and a special board committee of WeWork was reached on Feb. 25, according to SoftBank.

    SoftBank has invested in emerging companies via its Vision Fund. WeWork postponed its initial public offering in 2019 amid investor concerns about the financial performance and governance of the office space-sharing firm.

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