Japan's SoftBank half-year net profit soars 80%

Japanese mobile carrier SoftBank said Monday first-half profits soared nearly 80 percent, largely owing to one-time gains including the sale of some of its stake in Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba.

The company booked a net profit of 766.2 billion yen ($7.33 billion) in the six months through September, up 79.6 percent from a year earlier, while operating profit also rose as the firm pointed to upbeat results in its domestic telecom business.

However, revenue in the first half of the fiscal year edged down 0.2 percent to 4.27 trillion yen.

"The most important thing is the domestic business, and as long as that is solid, pluses and minuses from smaller businesses won't be an influence," Satoru Kikuchi, an analyst at SMBC Nikko Securities, told Bloomberg News.

Flamboyant SoftBank founder Masayoshi Son has led the firm on a string of acquisitions big and small, with many showing themselves to be ahead of their time, including the firm's investment in Alibaba, China's equivalent to eBay.

It reaped huge profits from a partial sale of its stake in Alibaba, while in June it sold Finnish game-maker Supercell Oy, creator of "Clash of Clans", to Chinese Internet giant Tencent for $8.6 billion.

But its US mobile unit Sprint has struggled and some analysts have questioned SoftBank's most recent high-profile deal -- the $32-billion purchases of British iPhone chip designer ARM Holdings.

Other News
Asian markets boosted by FBI Clinton announcement
Singapore's GIC buys European warehouse group