April 25, 2012 / 7:35 AM / 6 years ago

China Auto Rental postpones $138 mln U.S. IPO

April 25 (Reuters) - China Auto Rental Inc has postponed its U.S. initial public offering, failing to attract enough investors for its $137.5 million deal.

The Beijing-based company, backed by Legend Holdings, would have been the second U.S. IPO by a Chinese company this year. Legend Holdings is the parent of China-based private equity fund Hony Capital, and the owner of computer maker Lenovo among other businesses.

China Auto Rental blamed “capital market conditions,” without elaborating further in a statement on Wednesday.

Thomson Reuters publication IFR said that the company planned to offer 11 million shares at an indicative price range of US$10.50-$12.50, representing a 2013 price to earnings multiple of 10.1 to 11.8 times earnings.

U.S.-listed China stocks were hit hard last year after a string of accounting scandals caused investors to flee the sector. Dozens of China based companies listed in the U.S. were either delisted or forced to sort out accounting concerns.

In January, China Auto Rental became the first Chinese company to file for a U.S. listing since regulators changed the rules to ensure foreign issuers made public the first draft of their registration statements.

China Auto Rental, which boasts of a fleet of more than 10,000 in China’s fast-growing car rental market, had earlier expected the IPO to raise a maximum of $158.1 million, including overallotments.

BofA Merrill Lynch, J.P. Morgan and Morgan Stanley acted as joint book-running managers of the offering. The company had planned to use the proceeds to repay debts and buy vehicles.

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