Doggy king Wag raises $300m from SoftBank

Dog-walking startup Wag raises $300m from SoftBank with plans to take on the pet food industry.

January 31, 2018

Put down your leashes, because the dog-walking startup Wag has raised $300m from SoftBank Vision Fund.

This investment marks yet another expensive deal from ol’ Softy (honestly, at this point, their cash flow seems truly endless), and it makes them a 45% owner in the pup-care business.

It also gives them a ton of control in the process

Being behind the entire deal reportedly gives SoftBank an “enormous” influence over at Wag. Exhibit A: the fact that the deal hinged on Wag’s assurance to SoftBank that they would find a new, more seasoned CEO.

With two shakes of a dog’s hind legs, Wag canned their co-founder Josh Viner and brought on former LifeLock CEO Hilary Schneider as their new chief executive (though, the Viner family claims the two developments had “nothing to do” with each other). 

Why all this for a dog-walking company?

When asked what what he sees in Wag, one of SoftBank’s senior investors said “Wag is a clear leader in the rapidly growing global market for pet care services.”

SoftBank continues to throw money at the top companies of emerging, somewhat untapped, fields, like the Indoor farming company Plenty, or drug research companies like Roivant… and now dog-walking.

Because when you can afford the best, why get the off-brand?

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