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Rakuten reports quarterly loss on Lyft, mobile service

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Rakuten Inc has reported an unexpected quarterly loss, hit by the depressed value of its investment in ride-hailing firm Lyft Inc and heavy spending on a new wireless service.

The company said it booked a 1.8 billion yen ($17 million) operating loss in the April-June quarter compared with a 61.6 billion yen profit in the same period a year earlier.

Rakuten, whose billionaire founder and Chief Executive Hiroshi Mikitani has a seat of Lyft’s board, recorded a 28.4 billion yen unrealized loss on its stake in the ride-hailing firm for April-June, as it had warned in July. It recorded a 110 billion yen gain in the previous quarter.

The results come a day after SoftBank Group Corp posted an unrealized loss on its stake in Lyft rival Uber for the April-June quarter. The two money losing ride-hailing firms are locked in a cash-burning battle for dominance in the U.S. market.

Rakuten cited an operating loss in its mobile services business, as it steps up investment in a new wireless service that is due to launch in October. The move will make it Japan’s No. 4 mobile carrier.

© (c) Copyright Thomson Reuters 2019.

©2019 GPlusMedia Inc.

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