Tech Transformers

SoftBank's deal to invest in Uber 'very likely' in the next week, Arianna Huffington says

Key Points
  • SoftBank's investment in Uber could be agreed within the next week, Arianna Huffington said
  • The investment has hit roadblocks over pricing
  • Huffington also addressed the problems at Uber saying that there was a culture of "worship at the altar of hyper growth"
Arianna Huffington
Adam Jeffery | CNBC

SoftBank's much-anticipated investment in Uber could be agreed upon within a week, according to Arianna Huffington, one of the board members of the ride-hailing app.

The Japanese giant run by Masayoshi Son is seeking to invest $10 billion into Uber for a fairly substantial stake. But so far, talks have hit roadblocks as both sides are yet to decide on the pricing of shares.

Media mogul Huffington, who has been on Uber's board since April 2016, said on Monday that a deal would come "very likely in the next week."

"We are waiting at the moment on what is going to transpire in terms of the price," Huffington said in an on-stage interview at the WSJ D.LIVE conference in California.

SoftBank's investment will be $1 billion to $1.25 billion at the company's last reported valuation of $69 billion, sources told CNBC. SoftBank also hopes to buy a 14 to 17 percent stake of shares from existing shareholders at a discount, the sources said. Thus potentially bringing the stake to around $10 billion.

Earlier this month, Uber's board voted to accept the investment from SoftBank.

The Japanese giant has been writing big paychecks to start-ups across the world. If the investment in Uber goes through, it will likely be one of its largest to-date, and give the ride-hailing app some firepower to continue aggressively expanding.

Uber has faced a rocky few months with founder Travis Kalanick stepping down as chief executive following a number of scandals. Former Expedia CEO Dara Khosrowshahi took the helm at Uber in August and has had to tackle more issues including a ban in London for the ride-hailing service, as well as battles in the boardroom with Kalanick.

Huffington addressed the problems Uber faced under Kalanick, calling him "brilliant" but also admitting that the company's culture was wrong.

"The problem was this worship at the altar of hyper growth, which means you forget to build the culture. Culture, we are now recognizing, is the immune system of a company … We are recognizing that what happens in the culture is contributing to the bottom line," Huffington said.