Gaming firm Razer eyes $5b valuation in Hong Kong IPO

Hong Kong skyscrapers. Photo: Reuters

Razer Inc. is shooting for a Hong Kong initial public offering that could value the gaming gear maker at as much as $5 billion and help fund development of its own mobile phone, people familiar with the matter said.

The company — which makes accessories from mice to laptops that bear a green tri-headed snake — is developing a mobile device tailored for its consumer base of hardcore gamers, according to the people. Razer’s share sale, which will give it ample ammunition to develop new gadgets, will seek to value the company at $3 billion to $5 billion, the people said, asking not to be identified talking about internal plans. It aims to list around October, the people said.

Razer, which sells products online and in chains like Best Buy across the U.S., has said it wants to use Hong Kong as a beachhead from which to accelerate its expansion into China’s $25 billion gaming market. The company now sells its product there via e-commerce giants JD.com Inc. and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., co-founder Tan Min-Liang said in an interview in June. It sold $1 billion worth of product globally in the past three years, Tan added.

Razer’s IPO would be one of the largest tech debuts in the Asian financial center in years. The company, co-founded in 2005 by Singapore-born Tan, considered a U.S. IPO as far back as 2014, people with knowledge of the matter said at the time. In October the same year, the company was valued at $1.5 billion, according to data from researcher CB Insights. The company declined to comment on its IPO plans in an email on Wednesday.

The company, whose backers include Intel Corp. and a unit of Temasek Holdings Pte, counts gaming hardware as its main source of revenue but is also developing a virtual currency called zGold and building up its community. Razer, which sponsors more than 300 eSports athletes, is building a software platform that connects and launches games for some 35 million users.

The global video games industry is expected to grow by about 25 percent to $146 billion in 2020 from an estimated $117 billion this year, according to data from Euromonitor International. The Asia-Pacific market, however, is slated to expand by a much faster 39 percent to $65.3 billion over the same period, driven by 40 percent growth in gaming software alone, the data show. The comparable hardware market is expected to expand 22 percent.

Also Read: Singapore: Razer submits filing for $400m IPO on HK bourse

Razer’s brand growth driven by unrelenting focus: Min-Liang Tan

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.