SoftBank-backed Beike shares surge in NY debut after raising $2.12b in IPO

Zuo Hui, chairman of Beijing-based real-estate brokerage platform Beike Zhaofang. Source: Beike Zhaofang official Weibo account

Shares of SoftBank-backed KE Holdings Inc jumped 75% in their New York debut on Thursday, after the Chinese online real estate broker raised $2.12 billion in its initial public offering that was priced above its earlier target range.

Shares of KE, also known as Beike Zhaofang, opened at $35.06 per American depositary share (ADS), compared to its IPO price of $20 per ADS.

The company, which owns property brokerage brand Lianjia and housing transactions platform Beike, said earlier on Thursday it sold 106 million ADSs for $20 each.

The company had aimed to sell each ADS, representing three Class A ordinary shares, at between $17 and $19.

Apart from SoftBank Group Corp, KE counts Tencent Holdings Ltd, Hillhouse Capital and Sequoia Capital among its largest investors.

KE’s share sale is the largest IPO of a Chinese company since March 2018, when video streaming site iQiyi raised $2.4 billion from its U.S. listing.

The IPO comes at a time the U.S. government is threatening to delist Chinese companies that do not meet U.S. accounting standards.

Despite the threat and rising U.S.-China tensions, the allure of a valuation on the world’s biggest stock market makes the risk of eventual delisting manageable, while Chinese tech firms find the regulatory burden of a U.S. listing lighter than that in mainland China or Hong Kong.

The listing also marks the second-largest U.S. IPO of the year, after Royalty Pharma, which raised $2.18 billion in its stock market debut earlier this year.

Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, China Renaissance, J.P. Morgan and CICC were among the underwriters for KE’s IPO.

Reuters

Singapore Reporter/s

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Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.