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SoftBank invests $60 mn in Axiata’s AI unit

SoftBank ADA_IFM_Image
Axiata Digital Advertising (ADA) is valued at $260 mn

Japan-based banking giant SoftBank has invested around $60 million in Axiata’s artificial intelligence (AI) unit called Axiata Digital Advertising (ADA), media reports said. The deal will see SoftBank acquire a 23.07 percent stake in the company. The new funding round means ADA is now valued at $260 million.

Daichi Nozaki, SoftBank Corp’s VP and head of the enterprise business unit’s global business division, told the media, “We believe this alliance between SoftBank and ADA will reshape the digital marketing and data landscape in the Asia-Pacific region. This move is part of our Beyond Carrier growth strategy as we seek to expand beyond the traditional telecommunications business; and by combining our diversified solutions and technologies with ADA’s expertise in the area of analytics, data, and AI digital marketing, we expect we can both generate significant synergies.”

Through the investment in ADA, SoftBank will further expand its footprint in the region. SoftBank will bank upon ADA’s expertise in AI and combine it with its customer data platform Treasure Data and the consumer base of its communication app Line.

ADA, on the other hand, will use the funds to further develop its AI models with a focus on precision targeting for the marketing industry, content analytics and automation of content creation.

Axiata Group president and group chief executive officer Datuk Izzaddin Idris said that with the capability, ecosystem, track record that SoftBank has and will bring to the table, the company can accelerate the target of achieving $2 billion business across Southeast Asia within the next five years.

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