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The Japanese teleco and online firm Softbank has bought about 14 percent of Chinese online holding firm Oak Pacific Interactive (OPI), with the intent of increasing the stake to 40 percent by 2011. For the 14 percent stake, it paid about $96 million…from the increase in stake, it would pay a total of $385 million, according to AP. In March 2006 it raised a $48.1-million round led by General Atlantic Partners and DCM-Doll Capital Management, and later bought a local Facebook clone Xiaonei, which is now one of the biggest in the country. Other sites in Oak’s portfolio includes the entertainment portal Mop.com, news site DoNews.com, YouTube clone UUMe.com, and classified ads provider RenRen.com.
Softbank already holds a 29.3 percent stake in the parent of Alibaba.com, in which Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) also holds a stake.
Updated: The official release is out. SBI and JOHO Capital also participated in the funding. Masayoshi Son, President and CEO of Softbank Corp. will join Oak’s board.