Goldman Sachs has pulled out of the Y1,450bn ($12.4bn) refinancing for Softbank’s acquisition of Vodafone Japan, raising fresh concerns about the Japanese communications group. Analysts say the US investment bank’s move to quit the lending syndicate suggests it has misgivings about the terms of the loan, which is supported by revenues from the mobile arm. Despite the setback, Softbank expects the refinancing to go ahead at the end of this month. Softbank said other lenders would fill the gap left by Goldman’s departure. The syndicate includes Deutsche, Citibank and Mizuho.
Goldman said on Wednesday it had no one available to comment on why it had withdrawn from the financing – a decision made some time after October 20 when Softbank announced the bank was “scheduled to participate”. Softbank had a poor showing in the war for mobile customers unleashed by number portability. Softbank had been hoping to exploit number portability – along with aggressive price cuts – to boost its market share. Continue >>