Chinese regulators halt Ant’s IPO

The Ant Technology Group’s public listing was expected to be the biggest IPO ever, but now Chinese regulators have suspended the stock market debut.

The Chinese FinTech company was expecting to list in Shanghai and Hong Kong on Thursday November 5. The listing was believed to be able to drum up roughly $34.4bn in expected shares being sold.

However, Jack Ma, the founder of Ant and e-commerce giant Alibaba, was called in to speak with Chinese authorities after they raised “major issues” regarding the IPO.

The Shanghai Stock Exchange said in a statement that Mr Ma had been called in for “supervisory interviews”.

A change to the regulatory environment meant Ant no longer met “listing conditions or information disclosure requirements”, according to the BBC.

The news wiped away roughly $76bn of the value of Alibaba shares being traded. The company owns a third of Ant.

Ant runs online payment system Alipay.

Earlier this summer Chinese regulators gave Ant Financial Services permission to change its name to Ant Technology Group. At the time, it was believed the name change was a move to avoid increasing scrutiny from Chinese financial regulators.

The suspended stock market debut also means that the investors who have backed Ant in the past will have to wait longer in order to cash in on their investment.

Some of the private equity firms that have invested in the venture include Silver Lake, Warburg Pincus, Carlyle Group and General Atlantic. They bought stakes in the business in 2018 when Ant Raised $10.3bn from investors outside of China, the only time it has done so.

Other investors include mutual-fund managers T. Rowe Price Group Inc., BlackRock Inc. and Fidelity Investments as well as sovereign-wealth funds of Singapore and Malaysia, and the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board.

Copyright © 2020 FinTech Global

Enjoying the stories?

Subscribe to our daily FinTech newsletter and get the latest industry news & research


The following investor(s) were tagged in this article.