Seoul — SoftBank Group’s Vision Fund was investing $2bn in South Korea’s top e-commerce company Coupang, the retailer said on Tuesday as the unprofitable start-up got prepared to battle rivals backed by the country’s cash-rich chaebol. The latest investment follows the $1bn that SoftBank invested in Coupang in 2015 and valued the eight-year-old start-up at about $9bn, said a source close to Coupang. Coupang has grown rapidly to become a major player in the country’s e-commerce market. It clocked 2.7-trillion won ($2.4bn) in revenue last year, with its online sales almost as much as the next three largest e-commerce sites in the country combined, according to research firm Statista. But it also posted big losses, totalling 1.9-trillion won ($1.7bn) over the past five years as it poured money into building new technology and its logistics infrastructure. “The $2bn we are receiving now is exciting, because we can invest in more technology platforms that enable this innovation,” said Co...

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as exclusive Financial Times articles, ProfileData financial data, and digital access to the Sunday Times and Times Select.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Questions or problems? Email or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now