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SoftBank's evolution to tech investor pays off

Vision Fund ranks as group's top contributor to record earnings

Pepper, SoftBank's humanoid robot.
Pepper, SoftBank's humanoid robot. Artificial intelligence is a major part of the group's investment strategy, according to Chairman and CEO Masayoshi Son.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- The transformation of SoftBank Group from a mobile carrier into a global investment company is becoming more apparent, with its $100 billion Vision Fund outperforming its core Japanese telecommunications business in the three months ended June 30.

The group's operating profit surged 49% on the year to 714.9 billion yen ($6.41 billion) in results announced on Monday -- a first-quarter record.

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