China’s ‘Amazon of Services’ Is About to Have Hong Kong’s Latest Monster IPO
The “Amazon of services” is going public.
Meituan-Dianping, more commonly known simply as “Meituan”, is an “online-to-offline” or O2O platform in China offering everything from movie tickets to vacation booking. The company filed for an IPO late Friday on the Hong Kong stock exchange. The company is valued at $60 billion—twice what it was worth in October—and seeking to raise $4 billion from the IPO according to Reuters. Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and Bank of America Merrill Lynch are sponsoring the IPO.
Meituan was created in 2015 with the merger of two online services seen as China’s equivalents of Groupon and Yelp. Tencent (TCEHY) is a major investor in the business. Alibaba (BABA) was invested in Meituan before the merger, but has since sold off the majority of its stock. Alibaba has its own O2O app called Koubei that it’s investing in as a competitor to Meituan.
This will be the second multibillion-dollar tech float this year after the Beijing-based smartphone maker Xiaomi. Both Xiaomi and Meituan are listing with a dual-class share structure under a new rule in the city that was designed to attract tech companies.
Xiaomi’s shares are expected to start trading in July. Meituan has not indicated when shares will start trading, but an October list-date is expected.
As it prepares to list, Meituan has something in common with many of the giant tech IPOs of the past: Despite boasting 320 million active users, the site has yet to turn a profit. In 2017 the company had an adjusted net loss of 2.8 billion yuan ($430 million), down from 5.4 billion yuan ($830 million) in 2016.