On what basis does SoftBank invest

Masayoshi Son: This is how the Softbank boss became the biggest tech investor

Like it or not, Softbank and its boss Masayoshi Son are with us all day. Be it the apps and services financed by the Japanese investor that we use. Or the chips in our phones, designed by a Softbank-supported company.

And yet the head of the company, Masayoshi Son, is largely unknown in this country. Who is the man who is the world's largest tech investor today?

Which business should I start? Masayoshi Son had this question in his head when he was still a teenager, says "NZZ" Japan correspondent Martin Kölling, for example. In the 1970s, McDonald’s came to Japan under the leadership of Den Fujita, a management legend in the country.

At the time, Son was 16 years old, curious and, according to his own account, tried 60 (!) Times to get his management role model on the phone. Initially in vain. But Son remains persistent, only asks for three minutes - and gets the time at some point.

In the end it was even 15 minutes, and Son received his answer: He should do something with computers. Definitely not something that already exists. He must look ahead, far ahead. And that's what Son has been doing ever since.

Masayoshi Son studied in the USA

Masayoshi Son thinks big. While studying in the USA, he writes down one invention a day, which he believes is the most efficient use of his time.

The first business idea was quickly found: together with a few fellow students and professors, he developed an electronic dictionary. For Japanese, English and even German. Son founds a company and later sold it to a Japanese company.