Mainland drone giant's IPO could take flight

Finance | Avery Chen and agencies 28 Jul 2020

The world's largest maker of non-military drones, the mainland's SZ DJI Technology, is said to be considering an initial public offering in Hong Kong, though people within the company claimed they had not received any information on the move.

DJI was valued at around US$16 billion (HK$124.8 billion) after the latest round of financing worth of US$1 billion in April 2018.

The company had been weighing whether to list in either Hong Kong or the mainland since 2018, according to Reuters, but had put the deal on ice amid intensifying China-US trade tensions.

The US Interior Department has grounded the privately held DJI's drone fleet and halted additional purchases because of data security risks, and more restrictions could be in the offing.

Meanwhile, Hangzhou Tigermed Consulting, a mainland clinical research service provider, launches a Hong Kong IPO today to raise up to HK$10.7 billion with a minimum investment of HK$10,100 per board lot of 100 shares.

The Shenzhen-listed company plans to use 40 percent of proceeds from the flotation to fund potential acquisitions, 15 percent to expand and improve operational capacity, and 10 percent to repay outstanding loans.

And around 20 percent of proceeds will be used to invest in and "incubate" innovative companies in the health-care sector while 5 percent will be for developing advanced technologies.

And in other action, Credit Suisse Group has invested nearly US$100 million in Ant Group during its last funding round.

That sets up the Swiss bank up for a potential windfall as the Chinese internet giant prepares to go public.

The Zurich-based lender, a frequent adviser on deals across Jack Ma Yun's empire, made the equity investment during Ant's 2018 fundraising, which valued the company at US$150 billion.

One estimate from Bernstein projected Ant's valuation at US$210 billion, meaning a 40-percent increase from the earlier investment level.

Elsewhere, Leader Education, a mainland private higher education service provider, has attracted at least HK$94 million in retail orders through margin financing, meaning the retail tranche of its IPO is at least 1.17 times oversubscribed.

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