Katerra, a construction startup that aims to reinvent building with technology, is getting a $200 million lifeline from Japanese mega fund SoftBank — which has already invested a fortune in the company.

The new injection of cash will save Katerra from having to seek bankruptcy protection, and along with a prior $2 billion investment, will give SoftBank a majority stake in the startup, according to the Wall Street Journal, which first reported the news. Katerra shareholders approved the deal Wednesday, according to a company statement.

The statement adds that with the new money, Katerra is “positioned to accelerate its path to profitability and continue its pursuit to transform the construction industry through innovation of process and technology.”

Paal Kibsgaard

“We believe that this strategic and operational realignment, supported by SoftBank, is in the best interest of all stakeholders and will provide Katerra with the financial flexibility and resources needed to invest in areas that have the most promising growth trajectory,” CEO Paal Kibsgaard also said in the statement.

Katerra was founded in 2015 and over the ensuing years, aimed to increase efficiency in construction via technology. The firm has employed prefabrication methods, developed a software platform and acquired other companies.

However, by 2019, Katerra was showing signs of strain, with leadership turnover and scuttled projects. The Wall Street Journal further reported that the firm has experienced cost overruns and took on a high debt load as it sought to expand quickly. Those challenges evidently came to a head this week when SoftBank helped it avert an existential crisis.

Of course, SoftBank is also no stranger to challenging companies. The mega fund has famously backed Compass and Opendoor, the latter of which went public this month, but is perhaps most popularly known for providing the money behind troubled office space startup WeWork.

WeWork’s own initial public offering collapsed last year. In November, SoftBank posted a $6.4 billion loss, and its CEO said he regretted investing in WeWork.

Whether Katerra turns out more like WeWork or more like Opendoor — which has at least managed to maintain a steady share price — remains to be seen. But by pumping more money into the startup, SoftBank at least seems to be indicating that it doesn’t currently regret backing Katerra.

Email Jim Dalrymple II

Show Comments Hide Comments
Sign up for Inman’s Morning Headlines
What you need to know to start your day with all the latest industry developments
By submitting your email address, you agree to receive marketing emails from Inman.
Thank you for subscribing to Morning Headlines.
Back to top
Only 3 days left to register for Inman Connect Las Vegas before prices go up! Don't miss the premier event for real estate pros.Register Now ×
Limited Time Offer: Get 1 year of Inman Select for $199SUBSCRIBE×
Log in
If you created your account with Google or Facebook
Don't have an account?
Forgot your password?
No Problem

Simply enter the email address you used to create your account and click "Reset Password". You will receive additional instructions via email.

Forgot your username? If so please contact customer support at (510) 658-9252

Password Reset Confirmation

Password Reset Instructions have been sent to

Subscribe to The Weekender
Get the week's leading headlines delivered straight to your inbox.
Top headlines from around the real estate industry. Breaking news as it happens.
15 stories covering tech, special reports, video and opinion.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
Unique features from hacker profiles to portal watch and video interviews.
It looks like you’re already a Select Member!
To subscribe to exclusive newsletters, visit your email preferences in the account settings.
Up-to-the-minute news and interviews in your inbox, ticket discounts for Inman events and more
1-Step CheckoutPay with a credit card
By continuing, you agree to Inman’s Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

You will be charged . Your subscription will automatically renew for on . For more details on our payment terms and how to cancel, click here.

Interested in a group subscription?
Finish setting up your subscription