Chinese investment banks change tack in Hong Kong
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Chinese investment banks change tack in Hong Kong

Photo: Getty

Hong Kong-based Chinese investment banks, plagued by the market’s liquidity issues, are looking to China's economic pivot and the renminbi's rise as a fundraising currency to restore their fortunes.

In February 2021, 1.4 million people in Hong Kong registered for Kuaishou’s initial public offering. The short video platform, a heavyweight rival to TikTok in China's smaller cities, saw its offering oversubscribed by 1,200 times, with potential buyers committing a record HK$1.28 trillion ($164 billion).

The $5.4 billion-equivalent offering marked the world's largest IPO since Uber Technologies' 2019 deal, which netted $8.1 billion. On its trading commencement, Kuaishou's shares nearly tripled their IPO price, catapulting the company’s valuation to over HK$1 trillion.

This frenzy came a mere two months after the abrupt cancellation of Ant Financial's Hong Kong IPO, an event many interpreted as the first strike of a tech clampdown. Yet Hong Kong's market stood its ground. The Hang Seng Index surged past 30,000 that month, a peak not seen since 2018. The mood was electric, with predictions of endless growth.

“Many Westerners suggested that the tech crackdown has caused the Hong Kong stock market’s fall, but that’s nonsense,” an IPO banker at a leading Chinese investment bank tells Euromoney.


larissa ku 960.jpg
Senior reporter for Asia
Larissa Ku is a senior reporter for Asia. She joined Euromoney in 2023. Based in Hong Kong, she has spent more than a decade covering private equity, banking, treasury and fintech across various brands, including Asian Venture Capital Journal – where she won State Street Institutional Press Awards Asia Pacific 2023’s technology journalist of the year – Corporate Treasurer and DigFin.
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