Goldman-backed Chinese online pet store Boqii said to plan $100m IPO

A woman carries a dog into a holiday rental property office on Lamma Island in Hong Kong, China. Photographer:Brent Lewin/ Bloomberg

Boqii Co., a Chinese online pet shop backed by Goldman Sachs Group Inc., is planning an initial public offering that could raise at least $100 million, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

The sale could happen this year, the people said, asking not to be identified because the information is private. The Shanghai-based e-commerce startup is considering selling shares in Hong Kong or the U.S., one of the people said.

Boqii is tapping into rising affluence as more households adopt pets in a Chinese market that Frost & Sullivan expects will more than double to 472 billion yuan ($70 billion) by 2023. The online platform has more than 12 million paying users, selling them food, providing listings for veterinarians and groomers and operating a social network for owners to share pictures of their animals.

A successful IPO would add to the $2.6 billion Chinese companies have raised via first-time overseas share sales this year. That’s a slow start compared with the $5.9 billion during same period of 2018, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

A representative for Boqii declined to comment.

Goldman Sachs has been long-time backer of Boqii, investing in its series A fundraising, which was completed in June 2013, according to statement sent by the company. Boqii, which was founded in 2008, completed a $25 million series B funding in 2014 when Goldman invested again, it said in the statement. While its business focuses on dogs and cats, it also offers services for guinea pigs, turtles, rabbits and lizards.

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Bloomberg

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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.