Japanese telecom giant Softbank said yesterday it will buy back about 14 percent of its shares for more than $4.0 billion, after the stock plunged since the start of the year. The company plans to buy 167 million shares over one year starting today at a total cost of around 500 billion yen ($4.4 billion), it said. "The proposed share repurchase will be funded through proceeds from the sale of assets and cash on hand, but not through any debt procurement," the company said.
The buyback - which tends to beef up a stock's value - comes after SoftBank's Tokyo-listed shares dropped 28 percent since the start of the year amid wild volatility on global markets. Last week, the company -- which owns a huge stable of firms including US-based mobile giant Sprint -- said its nine-month net profit was down by more than one-quarter from a year earlier.
In August, Softbank president and former Google executive Nikesh Arora said he would buy a whopping $483 million in company shares to show confidence in SoftBank's prospects.