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SoftBank Handed App With Fake User Base $170m – engadget

The Japanese investment house lifted a little-known social media app called IRL to unicorn status on claims it had 20 million users

SoftBank's Vision Fund posted a $17bn quarterly loss on Monday.
SoftBank's big bets on two startups have gone belly up. Photo: Reuters


A social media app, valued at $1.17 billion after Japanese investment giant SoftBank pumped $170 million into it, has shut down after it admitted its claim of a 20 million user base was fake, engadget has reported.

IRL marketed itself as an event-organising alternative to Facebook but has been forced to fold after the admission. Softbank also invested nearly $400m in a robot pizza making company that is closing down, leaving it facing a total potential loss of $500 million in a single week, the report went on.

Read the full story: engadget


  • By Sean O’Meara


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Sean O'Meara

Sean O'Meara is an Editor at Asia Financial. He has been a newspaper man for more than 30 years, working at local, regional and national titles in the UK as a writer, sub-editor, page designer and print editor. A football, cricket and rugby fan, he has a particular interest in sports finance.


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