In the run-up to Alibaba’s earth-shaking IPO, the ecommerce titan has been all but silent during its customary “quiet period.” But 2014 as a whole has been a busy year for the firm. Alibaba has invested in or bought outright multiple companies both at home and abroad, spending so much money that some have referred to 2014 thus far as Alibaba’s “bachelor party.”
Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. plans to stop taking orders early from investors for its highly-anticipated initial public offering, according to media reports on Friday, citing people familiar with knowledge of the matter. The Chinese e-commerce giant reportedly has sufficient demand to sell all the stock in the IPO at the high end of its current price range and therefore, plans to start closing the order books early.
The videos, which have been online for several days at Retail Roadshow , describe the company’s numerous shopping platforms and how each of them has impacted the lives of ordinary Chinese consumers. Despite the heartstring-plucking soundtrack and rosy tone, the clips nevertheless provide an excellent overview the company’s products and how it influences China’s retail infrastructure. If you’re hazy on the nuances behind Alibaba’s business model or numerous services, it’s well worth viewing.
Alibaba Group Holding has set the price range of its initial public stock offering $60 to $66 a share and hopes to raise a record-shattering $24.3 billion in what would be the biggest IPO ever. At $66 a share, the Chinese Internet behemoth would be valued at about $163 billion. “It was very close to what I expected,” said Francis Gaskins, director of research for Equities.com in Marina del Rey. “At that price range, it’ll do very well.”
By pricing Alibaba `s widely-anticipated initial public offering (IPO) below market expectations, CEO Jack Ma is seeking to avoid a repetition of internet peer Facebook`s disaster debut, say analysts. “Jack Ma is very astute and he noticed that Facebook tripped over its initial public offering and doesn`t want to do the same thing, so better to low ball it a bit and let it rise as it goes into the market than let the public investors feel like they have been short changed and had paid too much,” Roger Kay, president at Endpoint Technologies told CNBC on Monday.
Alibaba has revealed the long-awaited numbers on its upcoming IPO – and it’s going to huge. Alibaba’s newly updated SEC filing shows that the Chinese ecommerce titan aims to raise over US$20 billion once it finally lists. Alibaba is going to sell 320.11 million American Depositary Shares, which it has pegged at a range of $60 to $66 per share. At the maximum price, Alibaba would raise $21.13 billion.
EIJING–Foreign nationals who want to buy Alibaba Group shares in the Chinese e-commerce giant’s U.S. public offering will need to get comfortable with an unusual business structure. Alibaba’s online and mobile commerce businesses will be controlled by a “variable interest entity,” an arrangement meant to allow investors to buy into Internet and other businesses in which Beijing bans or limits foreign ownership.
At this point, it looks like the IPO roadshow featuring Alibaba founder Jack Ma will begin on Sept. 3. The company’s seven investment banks and five outside law firms expect the song-and-dance routine for institutional investors to start in Asia, then head to Europe, and end up playing to packed investor houses all across United States. Alibaba IPOThen, the company should debut on the New York Stock Exchange in mid-September.
When Japanese messaging app Line reveals its quarterly revenues, we know what to expect – growth, growth, growth. The quarter ending in June 2014 is no exception, as today the company revealed revenues for the app hit JPY 18.2 billion (about US$177 million), up 25 percent from the previous quarter and 146 percent year-on-year. As usual, the company hasn’t provided details regarding profits or losses, so there’s no telling how the growth may or may not compensate for the ad dollars the company is throwing in markets all over the world.
SEOUL: Line Corp, a Japan-based social messaging service firm, has filed for an initial public offering in the United States, Bloomberg News reported on Friday, citing unidentified sources. Line’s parent company, South Korea’s Naver Corp, said on Wednesday that Line had filed for an initial public offering in Tokyo. Banking sources with direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters on Wednesday that the listing will ultimately be either a dual US-Japan listing or a listing only in the United States.
Both Reuters and the Wall Street Journal say this afternoon say they have it on good authority that messaging app Line is set to file for a huge IPO with the Tokyo Stock Exchange (TSX). No other details are available. This is contrary to the words of NHN CFO Hwang In-joon last year when he said that the firm was considering listing Line in the US in order to boost its global standing.
Chinese ecommerce leader Alibaba last night updated its SEC prospectus, revealing, among other things, details about last week’s acquisition of mobile browser maker UCWeb. The deal, which Alibaba proclaimed to be the biggest in Chinese internet history and bigger than Baidu’s US$1.9 billion acquisition of 91 Wireless, cost Alibaba US$479 million in cash and 12.3 million company shares for the remaining one-third of UCWeb.
UCloud, a China-based provider of cloud computing infrastructure and services for games companies, and mobile startups and other enterprises (think Amazon Web Services here), has raised $50 million in a Series B round of financing, which it says is the largest-ever funding round for a Chinese provider of cloud-infrastructure-as-a-service. The round was led by Bertelsmann Asia Investments and Legend Capital. Previously, Bertelsmann participated in UCloud’s $10 million Series A along with DCM.
Another week, another Chinese tech IPO. The latest one lined up to hit US markets is JD, the estore that’s a close rival to Alibaba’s Tmall and other general ecommerce sites such as Amazon China. JD goes public today upon opening of Thursday’s trading. The company has just priced its shares at $19 each, which is above the initial $16 to $18 range it advised a few days ago, reports CNN Fortune. If it debuts at that price, JD will raise $1.78 billion from its listing.
FreakOut, Japan’s first and largest demand-side platform (DSP) for real-time bidding (RTB) on digital advertising was approved for IPO on the Tokyo Stock Exchange’s Mothers index earlier today. The company will be listed starting June 24. Tokyo-based GMO Venture Partners revealed that it provided US$1.5 million in series A funding for FreakOut back in February 2012. The firm expressed strong admiration for FreakOut CEO Yuzuru Honda, a serial entrepreneur in Japan whose match advertising business Brainer was acquired by Yahoo Japan in 2008.
Given the rapid-fire pace at which SoftBank President Masayoshi Son has funded hundreds of tech startups over the past two decades, his company’s $20 million investment 14 years ago in a tiny Chinese e-commerce operator called Alibaba.com was easy to miss. Son’s dealmaking synapses have been in overdrive since the dawn of the Internet age in the mid-1990s, and he has bet billions on unproven startups in search of tomorrow’s most promising technologies and online business models. “On the Net, everything moves so quickly,” Son said in an interview in 2000. “So you have to do things differently.”
Alibaba gave investors a closer look at the scale and growth of the e-commerce juggernaut in an IPO prospectus filed on Tuesday in the first step of what could become the largest technology debut in history. The Hangzhou, Zhejiang-based company, which powers four-fifths of all online commerce in the world’s second-largest economy, is expected to raise upwards of US$15 billion in its initial public offering and potentially surpass the US$16 billion that Facebook managed in 2012.
NEW YORK: Sina Weibo, China’s answer to Twitter, debuted on the Nasdaq exchange Thursday with a 19.1 percent jump despite an IPO that went out under-subscribed and lower priced than hoped. In a spate of buying that suggested that Wall Street’s waters are still welcoming to loss-making technology high flyers, and to Chinese firms as well, Weibo shares rose from the subscription price of $17 to as high as $24.28, before settling the day at $20.24.
Zopim, a Singapore-based startup well-known for its live customer support chat widget, has been acquired by San Francisco’s Zendesk, a 500-strong customer support company that has filed for an IPO where it intends to raise US$150 million. The news was announced on both companies’ blogs. Zendesk’s S-1 filing states the Zopim deal could be worth up to $29.8 million. Zopim will get an upfront payment of $15.9 million, of which $5 million will be in cash and the rest in common stock.