There is more than an even chance that Qatar could invest in the global technology fund put together by Saudi Arabia and SoftBank Group Corp. The present corpus of the fund is about USD 100 million. Rumors of this happening have been strengthened by the visit of Masayoshi Son to Doha. Son is the chairman of SoftBank. He also visited other destinations within the gulf region.
Moving away from oil
Son reportedly met global investors and discussed investments. All reports on this subject are based on hearsay and not official. It is rumored that the sovereign wealth fund of Qatar Investment Authority is considering billions of dollars as investment into the fund. If it does so, the action reflects a conscious moving away of the Qatari economy from its dependence on oil. Both SoftBank and the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia want extra commitments of approximately USD 30 billion. Final agreements on this matter are yet to be reached. If one listens to informed sources then there is a chance that talks may falter. The new fund structure is being worked upon by the Goldman Sachs Group Inc.
No comments were forthcoming from the representatives of Goldman Sachs, QIA and SoftBank. A spokesperson for Public Investment Fund declined to respond promptly when asked questions about the subject. The person was asked outside business hours. A non-binding MoU or memorandum of understanding has been signed between Saudi Arabia and SoftBank to make a fund. This fund has been given the tentative name of SoftBank Vision Fund. The money raised through this fund will be used to shore up technology firms all over the globe. A $3.5 billion investment was made by Public Investment Fund in Uber Technologies in June.
The Tokyo headquartered company has consented to put in at least $25 billion of its own money. Saudi Arabia may fork out $45 billion. These amounts will be spread over the coming five years. Other big investors will make up the remaining sum of money. For countries located in the Arab Gulf region, it is important to search for new income sources as a slide in the prices of oil has put pressure on the growth of the economy. Deficits in the budget have also ballooned. There is a possibility that Saudi Arabian Oil Co. will be listed by the Saudi Government to enable the collection of $100 billion. The countries own sovereign wealth fund will be hold the oil company.