Uber shareholders discuss stock sale to SoftBank, others: Bloomberg

(Reuters) – Uber Technologies Inc’s shareholders and its board, led by venture capital firm Benchmark, have discussed selling some of their stock to Masayoshi Son’s SoftBank Group Corp <9984.T> and other potential investors, Bloomberg reported on Friday, citing people familiar with the matter.

The deal could include investment of new money into the startup, Bloomberg reported, adding that details about the valuation of shares or how much SoftBank or other investors would buy were unclear.

However, a CNBC report said Softbank was not in discussions to buy stock in the ride-hailing service.

Uber, Softbank and Benchmark did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The reports came after the Wall Street Journal earlier in the day said Uber’s biggest rival in Southeast Asia, Grab, was posed to raise as much as $2 billion in funding from SoftBank and China’s top ride-hailing firm Didi Chuxing.

Uber has been facing a number of setbacks, including accusations of a sexist work culture and driver protests, that culminated in the departure of co-founder and Chief Executive Travis Kalanick last month.

Benchmark partner Bill Gurley, who is one of Uber’s largest shareholders, along with other investors including First Round Capital and Lowercase Capital, all pressed Kalanick to quit.

(Reporting by Aishwarya Venugopal; Additional reporting by Ishita Palli in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva and Andrew Hay)