Feb 13, 2019

Despite Khashoggi, Saudi Arabia unlikely to lose U.S. investments

Photo: Bandar Algaloud via Getty Images

Let's call it: Neither SoftBank nor Saudi Arabia will face any significant U.S. investment losses over the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Driving the news: Axios has learned from multiple sources that San Francisco-based freight logistics startup Flexport is in talks to raise around $500 million in a SoftBank-led deal. One source puts the pre-money price talk at around $3 billion (another dissents), which could mean the final investment is smaller if either side becomes concerned about CFIUS approvals (which I'd think they would). [Update: A source closer to the situation puts the pre-money closer to $2 billion]

  • Last week, Silicon Valley-based robotic delivery vehicle-maker Nuro raised $940 million from SoftBank Vision Fund.
  • The Saudi sovereign wealth fund is now so confident that it's planning to open investment offices in U.S. cities like New York and San Francisco.

Between the lines: Just to make it crystal clear, Colony Capital CEO Tom Barrack yesterday joked about the murder from a conference stage in Dubai, arguing that U.S. concerns were a "misunderstanding" about the rule of law in Saudi Arabia. Unclear if Barrack realizes that Khashoggi was killed in Turkey.

Flashback ... The companies who have backed away from Saudi business over Khashoggi

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Mass shooting in Milwaukee: What we know

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett in 2012. Photo: John Gress/Corbis via Getty Images

Six people died in a shooting at the Molson Coors Brewing Company in Milwaukee on Wednesday, including the gunman, Mayor Tom Barrett told reporters at a Wednesday evening press conference with local police.

Details: All of the victims worked at the brewery complex, as did the shooter who died of "an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound," police confirmed in a statement late Wednesday.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 4 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus updates: South Korea case count tops 2,000

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

33 people in California have tested positive for the coronavirus, and health officials are monitoring 8,400 people who have recently returned from "points of concern," Gov. Gavin Newsom said Thursday.

The big picture: COVID-19 has killed more than 2,850 people and infected over 83,000 others in some 50 countries and territories. The novel coronavirus is now affecting every continent but Antarctica, and the WHO said Wednesday the number of new cases reported outside China has exceeded those inside the country for the first time.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 4 hours ago - Health

Syria's darkest chapter

Family room without a family, in Idlib. Photo: Muhammed Said/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The worst humanitarian crisis of Syria’s brutal civil war is colliding today with what could be the war’s most dangerous geopolitical showdown, after at least 29 Turkish troops were killed in an airstrike.

The big picture: The fighting is taking place in Idlib in northwest Syria, where a ferocious Syrian and Russian offensive has displaced 1 million civilians and infuriated Turkey, which borders the region.

Go deeperArrow6 hours ago - World