Q: Thank you, Mr. Son, for taking the time to speak with us today. As the CEO of SoftBank, you have played a significant role in the technology and investment sectors. Can you tell us about your journey and what motivated you to establish SoftBank?
Masayoshi Son: Thank you for having me. My journey with SoftBank began in 1981 when I founded the company. At that time, I saw the immense potential of the emerging technology industry, and I was driven by a passion to contribute to its growth. I believed that technology would reshape the world and wanted to be part of that transformation.
SoftBank initially started as a software distribution company, but over time, we expanded into various sectors such as telecommunications, internet services, and investments. Our vision was to become a global technology conglomerate, leveraging innovation and strategic investments to drive growth and create value.
Q: SoftBank has become known for its bold investments and acquisitions. Can you share your philosophy behind these strategic moves and how they have shaped SoftBank’s success?
Masayoshi Son: Absolutely. Our philosophy is rooted in identifying and supporting visionary entrepreneurs and disruptive technologies that have the potential to reshape industries and society. We actively seek out opportunities to invest in companies that align with our long-term vision and have the potential for significant growth.
One notable example of our investment strategy is the SoftBank Vision Fund, the largest technology investment fund globally. With the Vision Fund, we aim to support promising companies in areas like artificial intelligence, robotics, and biotechnology. We believe that by providing substantial funding and resources, we can help these companies accelerate their growth and make a positive impact on society.
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Our strategic moves and investments have allowed us to create a diversified portfolio of companies across various sectors, including telecommunications, e-commerce, ride-sharing, and fintech. This diversity helps us mitigate risks and seize opportunities in rapidly evolving markets.
Q: SoftBank has been instrumental in fostering technological advancements such as the deployment of 5G networks and the development of artificial intelligence. How do you see these technologies shaping the future, and what role does SoftBank play in their realization?
Masayoshi Son: I firmly believe that technologies such as 5G and artificial intelligence will be the building blocks of the future. 5G networks will revolutionize connectivity, enabling faster and more reliable communication, as well as powering the Internet of Things (IoT) and autonomous vehicles. SoftBank has been at the forefront of 5G deployment, both as a telecom operator and through our investments in related infrastructure.
Artificial intelligence, on the other hand, has the potential to transform industries across the board. SoftBank has made significant investments in AI-focused companies, including acquiring ARM Holdings, a leading semiconductor design company. We believe that AI will drive innovation and efficiency, improving everything from healthcare and manufacturing to transportation and customer service.
By actively participating in the development and deployment of these technologies, SoftBank aims to contribute to their widespread adoption and create new opportunities for growth and innovation.
Q: Lastly, what advice would you give to aspiring entrepreneurs and business leaders who are looking to make a positive impact in the technology sector?
Masayoshi Son: My advice would be to dream big and embrace risk-taking. The technology sector offers immense opportunities for those who are willing to challenge the status quo and think outside the box. Surround yourself with talented individuals who share your passion and vision, and never be afraid to fail. Failure is an essential part of the entrepreneurial journey, and it is through failure that we learn and grow.
Additionally, always keep an eye on emerging trends and technologies. The world is changing at an unprecedented pace, and staying ahead of the curve is crucial. Finally, never lose