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SoftBank CFO sticks to $41bn asset sale plan despite coronavirus

Yoshimitsu Goto says investors would rather Son have bigger stake, not smaller

SoftBank Group CFO Yoshimitsu Goto says the company is committed to its original one-year deadline for selling off some $41 billioin in assets. (Nikkei Montage/ Source photo by Jun Takai)

TOKYO -- SoftBank Group is determined to push ahead with its 4.5 trillion yen ($41 billion) asset sale program as originally planned despite the coronavirus wreaking havoc on markets and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe this week declaring the first state of emergency in Japan's postwar history.

"We made this decision [on asset sales] after the novel coronavirus was taking hold," Yoshimitsu Goto, chief financial officer of SoftBank Group, told the Nikkei Asian Review on Thursday. The company announced on March 23 the substantial disposal of assets to be "executed over the next four quarters," but financial markets around the globe have been shaken even further since then as the pandemic worsens.

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