JD.com Inc’s finance arm is looking to raise about 12 billion yuan ($1.9 billion) in fresh equity that could see its value double from last year to more than $20 billion, three people with knowledge of the matter said.
The unit of China’s second-largest e-commerce firm wants to deepen its push into areas such as securities, banking and insurance – businesses that have seen the entry of several new technology-focused players.
The move adds to an already hectic pace of fundraising by Chinese tech firms keen to respond to burgeoning demand for digital services, especially in the financial sector.
The fundraising by JD Finance kicked off late last year and is expected to be finalised in the coming weeks, the people said, declining to be identified as details of the deal were not public.
Investor enthusiasm for Chinese tech stocks has jumped over the past year. The unit was valued at about 60 billion yuan ($9.5 billion) when it was separated out from its parent in mid-2017 and that valuation has since grown to about 120 billion yuan ahead of the fundraising, the people said.
Potential investors in the new round include China International Capital Corp’s (CICC), Qiyuan National New Industry Venture Capital Guidance Fund, grains trader COFCO and conglomerate China Merchants Group, they said.
JD.com, CICC and China Merchants Group declined to comment. COFCO did not respond to a request for comment.
JD Finance offers online financial services and products including consumer credit and wealth management products. It also owns a few small financial licenses including a third-party payment license in China.