Alibaba Pushes Ahead With $15 Billion Hong Kong Listing After Nod From Exchange Operator
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The Hong Kong stock exchange has approved e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding’s initial public offer to sell upto $15 billion-worth new shares in a secondary listing, the South China Morning Post reported, citing several sources.
The company, which could start its roadshow from November 13, is expected to drum up nearly $10 billion to $15 billion in funds. The price per share will be determined on November 20, and the company will make its debut on the Hong Kong exchange in the last week of November, the report added.
However, the timing could slip because of the protests in Hong Kong, a Reuters report said.
Alibaba could offer nearly 500 million shares in the IPO, with a green-shoe option of an additional 75 million shares for its underwriters, which include state-owned investment bank China International Capital Corporation and Credit Suisse, among others, as per media reports. Bloomberg said JPMorgan and Morgan Stanley are also underwriting the secondary listing.
Alibaba’s IPO will be the third largest fundraising on record in Hong Kong if it lists at the top end of $15 billion, after insurance group AIA, and Industrial and Commercial Bank of China’s listings in 2010 and 2006, respectively, SCMP said. The listing will also help Hong Kong reclaim its IPO crown from the New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq, and rank as the world’s biggest cross-border secondary IPO.
Alibaba already holds a world record for the biggest IPO ever, with a $25 billion New York float, in 2014.
The company had originally filed for a Hong Kong listing in June, and had hoped to raise nearly $20 billion, a Financial Times report said. But rising political tensions in Hong Kong, the U.S.-China trade war, and the global stock market uncertainty, which adversely impacted Uber and Lyft’s IPOs, led to the company postponing its Hong Kong listing.
The company has not yet announced any details publicly, and the Hong Kong Bourse has declined to officially comment as well
Strong Singles Day Sales
Alibaba’s Hong Kong IPO comes on the back of strong Singles Day sales, which saw the company rake in a record $31 billion from sales. The small spike in sales helped allay some fears investors had about a slowdown in the Chinese economy,
Alibaba launched Singles Day in 2009, as a counter to Valentine's Day. Its first event saw participation from just 27 merchants, a BBC report said. Since then, the company has broken its own sales records multiple times, even surpassing Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.