April 12, 2018 / 6:15 AM / 6 months ago

Warburg Pincus in talks to invest in Ant's $8 bln funding round -sources 

HONG KONG, April 12 (Reuters) - U.S. private equity firm Warburg Pincus LLC is in talks to invest in a fundraising round for China’s Ant Financial Services Group that is expected to be worth at least $8 billion, people with knowledge of the matter said.

Ant, owner of China’s top online payment platform Alipay, is in talks with several global and Chinese investors about the fundraising, which could value the firm at as much as $150 billion, the people told Reuters.

Warburg Pincus is looking to become a key investor in the round, one of the people said.

Singapore state investor Temasek Holdings is likely to be the lead investor, a separate person with knowledge of the deal has previously said.

The sources declined to be identified as the talks were confidential.

Ant, controlled by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd founder Jack Ma, declined to comment on the fundraising and its talks with potential investors. Representatives for Alibaba and Warburg Pincus did not immediately respond to Reuters requests for comment.

Warburg Pincus has invested in a number of Chinese technology firms such as bike-sharing firm Mobike and electric vehicle maker NIO. (Reporting by Julie Zhu and Kane Wu; Editing by Sumeet Chatterjee and Edwina Gibbs)

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