Press Releases 2000

SOFTBANK RELEASES CONSOLIDATED EARNINGS FORECAST

Apr. 6, 2000

Tokyo, Japan, April 6, 2000 - SOFTBANK CORP. (TSE: 9984) released consolidated earnings forecasts for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2000.

Consolidated earnings forecasts for the year ending March 31, 2000 are as follows:

Millions of yen
  March 31, 1999 March 31, 2000 (F) Change
Net Sales 528,159 420,000 -108,159
Operating Income 12,129 7,000 -5,129
Ordinary Income -15,447 -55,000 -39,553
Net Income 37,538 3,500 -34,038

Management’s analysis is provided below

Consolidated Net Sales

Pursuant to the completion of the sale of Kingston Technology Company during the first half of the fiscal year, net sales of Kingston, which was roughly 130 billion yen for the year ended March 31, 1999, is excluded from the consolidated net sales figure for the year ended March 31, 2000. This exclusion and various other factors are forecast to result in a decline in net sales of around 108.2 billion yen.

Consolidated Operating Income

Consolidated operating income is forecast to be around 7 billion yen for the year ended March 31, 2000. SOFTBANK’s Japan-based subsidiaries, such as SOFTBANK FINANCE CORPORATION and SOFTBANK COMMERCE CORP., showed strong operating income growth for the current fiscal year, increasing from 8 billion yen in the fiscal year ended to March 31, 1999 to 13 billion yen for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2000. However, due to the exclusion of Kingston’s operating income, which was 4 billion yen in the fiscal year ended March 31, 1999, SG&A expenses at internationally located holding companies, as well as Ziff-Davis’ (NYSE: ZD) restructuring costs (excluding the amortization of goodwill), operating income for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2000 declined from the previous year.

Consolidated Ordinary Income

Consolidated ordinary income is forecast to be around -55 billion yen for the year ended March 31, 2000. This is primarily due to the 47.5 billion yen appraisal loss on a long-term yen denominated loan held by SOFTBANK Holdings Inc. as well as the 13.5 billion yen interest expense associated with Ziff-Davis Inc.’s external debt.

Consolidated Net Income

Consolidated net income is forecast to decline to around 3.5 billion yen for the year ended March 31, 2000. This is primarily due to the previously announced 77 billion yen loss on the sale of Kingston in the first half of the year as well as a 120 billion yen extraordinary loss accompanying the depreciation of intangible assets related to the sale of assets by Ziff-Davis in the second half of the year. However, this was offset by the 220 billion yen extraordinary gains recorded on the sale of Trend Micro Incorporated (J-OTC: 4704 Nasdaq: TMIC) shares, 127.5 billion yen, and the partial sale of SOFTBANK TECHNOLOGY CORP. (J-OTC: 4726) shares, 81 billion yen, as well as an extraordinary gain associated with changes in equity held in affiliates and subsidiaries accompanying the above mentioned sale of shares, 30 billion yen.

There is the possibility that expenses associated with the sale of assets by Ziff-Davis could decline by as much as 4 billion yen. Thus, net income could be revised upwards due to a reduction in these expenses.

Cash Position
As of March 31, 2000, SOFTBANK had a total of roughly 106 billion yen in cash and cash equivalents. SOFTBANK CORP., the pure-holding company held approximately 71 billion yen, while roughly 35 billion yen was held by subsidiaries. Management is confident that this is an adequate level of cash to meet its present capital commitments. Additionally, following the completion of asset sales by Ziff-Davis, SOFTBANK anticipates receiving around a 26.3 billion yen dividend payment. At present, SOFTBANK has absolutely no intention to raise capital by issuing new shares as was reported.
Actual investment loss/gains on the sale of U.S. subsidiaries
The actual investment loss on the sale of Kingston Technology Company as well as the forecast investment loss/gain on the investment in Ziff-Davis Inc. are depicted below:

(1) Actual loss on the investment in Kingston Technology Company

Total Investment ,` Apx. 130.0 Billion yen
Interest·Dividends (Net) ,a Apx. 29.0 Billion yen
Sale Price ,b Apx. 54.3 Billion yen
Actual Loss(,b+,a)-,` Apx. -46.7 Billion yen

$/yen rates are calculated using the prevailing rate at the time of the transaction.

(2) Forecast loss/gain on the investment in Ziff-Davis Inc.

Total Investment ,` Apx. 272.4 Billion yen
Interest·Dividends (Net) ,a Apx. 38.3 Billion yen
Repayment Accompanying IPO ,b Apx. 152.4 Billion yen
Forecast Dividend Accompanying The Sale Of Ziff-Davis Assets D Apx. 26.3 Billion yen
Market Capitalization Of The Portion SOFTBANK’s Holds In ZDNet Inc. E*1 Apx. 75.0 Billion yen
Forecast Of The Actual Performance Of SOFTBANK’s Investment In Ziff-Davis (B+C+D+E)- ,` Apx. 19.6 Billion yen + ZD Events

$/yen rates are as follows: A,B,C -At time corporate action took place. D,E -the closing forex rate on March 31, 2000 ($1.00=105.22 yen).

[Note]
  • *Following the completion of asset sales, Ziff-Davis will merge with a newly formed subsidiary to eliminate its tracking structure. The surviving company will be renamed ZDNet Inc., in which SOFTBANK will retain a roughly 45% interest. Calculation of the market capitalization of SOFTBANK’s stake in ZDNet is based on the closing share price for ZDNet on March 31, 2000 ($21.50/share). However, the market value of SOFTBANK’s future ZDNet Inc. holding does not include the market value of SOFTBANK’s remaining interest in the ZD Events division, which will be spun-off prior to the above mentioned merger of Ziff-Davis and ZDNet.

Contact

SOFTBANK FINANCE CORPORATION

Investor Relations Department

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