Market Overview

SoftBank And Chinese Automaker Partner To Produce 300M Masks Per Month In Japan

SoftBank And Chinese Automaker Partner To Produce 300M Masks Per Month In Japan

SoftBank Group Corp (OTC: SFTBY) is partnering with Chinese electric vehicle manufacturer BYD to supply Japan with 300 million masks per month.

What Happened

SoftBank plans to make 200 million surgical masks and 100 million N95 respirator masks per month from May. The company has made a deal with BYD, which started making masks in February as COVID-19 spread in China, according to NHK, the Japanese national broadcaster.

The CEO of SoftBank, Masayoshi Son, announced on Twitter that the production line for masks had been completed in collaboration with BYD Co Ltd. (OTC: BYDDY), the world’s largest mask manufacturer.

The CEO disclosed that SoftBank intends to supply masks in collaboration with the Japanese government, for as many people as possible, including those in the medical field.

SoftBank claims it is not seeking to make a profit from the masks.

Why It Matters

The Japanese government is encouraging companies to boost masks production due to a shortfall in supplies.

The government expects supply to increase to 700 million by May. If SoftBank’s masks are added, the supply is set to reach one billion, reported NHK.

Son’s earlier offer to donate one million free coronavirus tests in March came under heavy criticism. It was thought to lead to overburdening of the country’s healthcare system and workers, the Financial Times reports.

Price Action

SoftBank OTC shares closed 2.92% higher at $19.40 on Thursday. The company’s shares closed 3.38% lower at $38.90 on Monday in Tokyo.


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