Mainland online retail giant Alibaba has reportedly filed for a Hong Kong listing and sources say the listing will take place as soon as the third quarter of this year.
The listing is said to aim to raise as much as US$20 billion, lining the e-commerce group up for a second blockbuster deal following its 2014 record US$25 billion float in New York.
The deal would be the biggest follow-on share sale globally in seven years and would give Alibaba a war chest for technology investment – a priority for China as growth flags and as the world’s second-largest economy is locked in a mounting trade spat with the United States.
It was widely reported that Alibaba picked New York over Hong Kong to go public in 2014 because the SAR at that time didn't allow dual class share structure which many tech companies prefer.
The Chief Executive of the Hong Kong Stock Exchanges and Clearing, Charles LI, has said that Alibaba's decision to list in New York had forced him to rethink about dual class share structure.
Last year, the market operator lifted rules and allowed tech companies to list in Hong Kong under weighted-voting rights structure, which give some shareholders more voting rights than other.