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Alibaba May Pursue $20B Hong Kong Listing amid Trade Tension: Report

Last Updated September 23, 2020 12:45 PM
Williams Mugwagwa
Last Updated September 23, 2020 12:45 PM

By CCN.com: As U.S.-China trade war tensions escalate, Alibaba Group is toying around with the idea of raising $20 billion via a Hong Kong listing, Bloomberg reports  citing unnamed sources due to the privacy of the matter.

Chinese tech leader Alibaba, of which Jack Ma is the founder and chairman, debuted on the New York Stock Exchange in September 2014 and raised $25 billion – the largest IPO in history. The deal was bigger than the IPOs of internet giants Facebook, Google, and Twitter combined.

The sources cited by Bloomberg claim that Alibaba, an e-commerce behemoth, is opting to take this route to bolster liquidity and unlock multiple funding streams. Alibaba’s second listing is not a done deal. Nonetheless, the Chinese company has already sought the advice of financial advisors regarding the listing, which might happen later this year.

They have long been interested in a local listing, and tensions between the U.S. and China may have given them the push they needed. Alibaba previously failed to list in Hong Kong after regulators bumped into issues with the way the company wanted to structure itself.

Alibaba, the largest company in its homeland, has a market cap of just over $400 billion at the time of publication. The company’s shares have declined 20% over the past year.

Alibaba chart
The stock has lost one-fifth of its value over the last year. | Source: Yahoo Finance

US-China Trade War Tensions at a New High

Alibaba’s move comes at a time when U.S.-China trade war tensions are reaching new heights and threaten the survival  of some Chinese firms. The U.S. government has adopted a hostile stance against Chinese tech companies. A new trend might emerge in which Chinese companies listed on U.S. markets seek second listings on Asian markets amid trade war fears.

Douyu International Holdings, which is backed by Tencent and is China’s largest live streaming platform for games, planned to raise $500 million in a U.S. IPO. The company reportedly suspended its plans  due to trade-related fears. Trump has tweeted that the U.S. will not be on the receiving end of the trade war.

Perhaps the biggest Chinese company feeling the pressure of the trade war is Huawei, a China-based multinational technology company that also makes smartphones.

Whether Huawei deserves to be blacklisted or not, the company’s founder Ren Zhengfei is defiant and believes that the firm will come up with a survival strategy. The fallout between Huawei and the U.S. started a long time ago. CCN.com reported in January that the Huawei scandal could escalate U.S.-China trade war tensions.

Alibaba’s stock was down fractionally today.