Ant Group has kick-started the process of a concurrent initial public offering (IPO) on both the Shanghai and Hong Kong stock exchanges.
- The Hangzhou-based fintech giant, an affiliate of the Alibaba Group, said Monday that a dual listing would allow it to fund further domestic and global expansion as well as invest more in technology and innovation.
- Better known as the operator of payments app Alipay, Ant launched its own scalable network earlier this year and is believed to be one of the planned primary issuers for China's digital yuan.
- In the company's Series C round in 2018, Ant was valued at $150 billion; JPMorgan and Bank of America analysts now value the company at well over $200 billion.
- If that valuation holds, Ant Group's offering would make the company one of the most highly valued in the world and, arguably, the largest firm operating in the blockchain space.
- For comparison, crypto exchange Coinbase, which is said to be looking at a direct listing in early 2021, was last valued at only $8 billion.
- An Ant Group spokesperson declined to comment on whether the company was indeed targeting a $200 billion valuation.