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Banks

Instant View: Investors react to Ant Group's $34.4 billion IPO

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Chinese financial technology giant Ant Group Co Ltd 688688.SS has set terms for a dual listing aimed at raising up to $34.4 billion from the world's largest stock market debut, with investors scrambling for a piece of the fast-growing company.

The logo of Ant Financial Services Group, Alibaba's financial affiliate, is pictured at its headquarters in Hangzhou, Zhejiang province, following the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, China October 26, 2020. REUTERS/Aly Song

The deal would value Ant at more than $313 billion before a so-called greenshoe option for a 15% overallotment of shares.

Following are analysts’ reactions:

VARUN MITTAL, HEAD OF EMERGING MARKETS FINTECH BUSINESS AT EY, SINGAPORE

“Digital commerce and infrastructure platforms in Asia provide an unprecedented opportunity for Asian and global investors to be part of the next wave of value creation in Asia. Earlier this year, India saw a rush of international investors keen to invest in infrastructure and platforms ecosystem, which is being replicated in the Chinese ecosystem now.”

JUSTIN TANG, HEAD OF ASIAN RESEARCH AT UNITED FIRST PARTNERS, SINGAPORE

“The fear of missing out and the lack of other opportunities of this calibre” was spurring investor interest in the IPO, he said.

YANG DELONG, INVESTMENT MANAGER AT FIRST SEAFRONT FUND MANAGEMENT CO, SHENZHEN

“The Ant listing offers a chance to buy into a tech champion, but investors should avoid overpaying on the stock’s debut.”

He said the IPO would herald more domestic listings of tech giants and increase the weighting of “new economy” companies in China’s stock market but cautioned that the mammoth listing could impact market liquidity.

YANG TINGWU, VICE GENERAL MANAGER AT TONGHENG INVESTMENT, FUJIAN

He said investors will be now be engaged in the guessing game for the debut price.

If the strong debut of chip-making giant Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp (SMIC) is any guide, Ant’s valuation could more than double to hit 5 trillion yuan on debut, he said.

KE YAN, LEAD ANALYST AT DZT RESEARCH, WHO PUBLISHES ON SMARTKARMA PLATFORM, SINGAPORE

“I don’t see the valuation as a surprise because for this deal Ant has the pricing power and not the buy side, not the institutional investors. Even with the valuation at $313 billion I think there will still be upside, at least 20 to 30%.”

Reporting by Anshuman Daga in Singapore, Samuel Shen in Shanghai and Scott Murdoch in Hong Kong; editing by Emelia Sithole-Matarise

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