COO Claure departs, new CEO named

Marcelo Claure speaks on stage during the Digital X event on September 7, 2021 in Cologne, Germany.

Andreas Rentz | Getty Images Entertainment | Getty Images

The Japanese conglomerate SoftBank Group confirmed on Friday that Chief Operating Officer Marcelo Claure is leaving the company after a nine-year term.

CNBC reported Thursday that Claure would resign from the company, citing people familiar with the matter. Sources told CNBC’s Andrew Ross Sorkin and Alex Sherman that Claure had been in discussions about leaving SoftBank for several months.

SoftBank Group’s shares in Tokyo rose 3.28% in afternoon trading on the news.

Claure, seen by many as the right hand of SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son, was also the CEO of SoftBank Group International. He led turnaround operations at Sprint, which later merged with T-Mobile in 2020, and WeWork, after founder Adam Neumann resigned.

He helped launch SoftBank’s $ 5 billion fund in 2019 to invest in technology start-ups across Latin America as well as the SB Opportunity Fund, which invests in underrepresented racial minorities.

Michel Combes, president of SoftBank Group International, was appointed CEO on Friday to replace Claure. He must oversee the company’s operating and investment portfolio.

“Marcelo has made many contributions to SoftBank during his time here, and we thank him for his dedication and wish him continued success in his future endeavors,” said Masayoshi Son, SoftBank Group’s Chairman and CEO, in a statement.

“I have great confidence in Michel Combes and the talented SoftBank team to continue the great work we have going on at SBGI [SoftBank Group International]. “

Claure is the latest among Son’s close advisers to abruptly leave the company. Nikesh Arora, who was ready to eventually succeed Son, traveled in 2016, while Alok Sama left in 2019.

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