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Photo illustration of the SoftBank Group logo on a smartphone. Photo Illustration: Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

SoftBank announced Tuesday it will create a $3 billion private investment fund focusing on technology companies in Latin America.

Why it matters: The launch of the SoftBank Latin America Fund II comes after the Japanese investment giant started a $5 billion fund in the region two years ago that became one of Latin America's most active venture capital players.

Details: The new fund intends to invest in technology-enabled companies at every stage of their development, from seed to public, SoftBank said.

  • SoftBank Latin America Fund II will seek prospective investments of firms that are utilizing emerging technologies and AI.
  • The fund especially wants to focus on focus on e-commerce, digital financial services, healthcare, education, blockchain, and enterprise software.

What they're saying: “Latin America is one of the most important economic regions in the world, and SoftBank will continue to drive technology adoption that will benefit hundreds of millions of people in this part of the world," SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son said in a statement.

  • Son said Latin America continues to see innovation and disruption and he believed business opportunities are strong in the region.

The intrigue: Marcelo Claure, the SoftBank COO, who leads the first Latin American fund will also oversee the second investment, the company said.

  • "We expect that 2022 will be the biggest IPO year in Latin America’s history. Now is the time for us to double down on our commitment to the region," Claure said.

Our thought bubble, via Axios' Kia Kokalitcheva: SoftBank not only has a history of backing high growth startups in Latin America but it’s also a fan to very large markets like China and Latin America.

  • "In the latter, it also has the advantage of being one of the few currently able companies and is willing to write large checks."

Don't forget: SoftBank has a long history in Latin America. In 2000, it created SoftBank Latin America Ventures to support the group’s companies in the region and invest in startups, Bloomberg reports.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Latino ingenuity: From the color TV to oral birth control

Illustration: Shoshana Gordon/Axios

From color TV to medical breakthroughs that led to the birth control pill, Latin America and the Caribbean have had game-changing influences on the world.

Why it matters: Hispanic Heritage Month begins Wednesday and over the next four weeks, the Axios Latino newsletter is highlighting Latinos' contributions to the world, from ancient agricultural practices to more recent innovations in medicine, science and education.

Mike Allen, author of AM
57 mins ago - Technology

Axios interview: Facebook to try for more transparency

Nick Clegg last year. Photo: Matthew Sobocinski/USA Today via Reuters

Nick Clegg, Facebook's vice president of global affairs, tells me the company will try to provide more data to outside researchers to scrutinize the health of activity on Facebook and Instagram, following The Wall Street Journal's brutal look at internal documents.

Driving the news: Clegg didn't say that in his public response to the series. So I called him to push for what Facebook will actually do differently given the new dangers raised by The Journal.

The Exvangelicals

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Even as evangelicals maintain their position as the most popular religion in the U.S., a movement of self-described "exvangelicals" is breaking away, using social media to engage tens of thousands of former faithful.

The big picture: Donald Trump's presidency, as well as movements around LGBTQ rights, #MeToo and Black Lives Matter, drew more Americans into evangelical churches while also pushing some existing members away.