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China's Wanda Sports cuts US IPO size, lowers price range

[SINGAPORE] Wanda Sports Group Co Ltd, a unit of Chinese conglomerate Dalian Wanda Group, has cut the size of its US initial public offering (IPO) to up to US$308 million from a previous size of up to US$500 million.

The firm set its IPO price range at US$9 to US$11 per American depositary share (ADS), compared with a previously stated range of US$12 to US$15, showed its latest prospectus filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission on Wednesday.

The cut indicates tepid US investor demand for Chinese stocks after China's largest live-streaming platform DouYu International Holdings Ltd priced its US$775 million Nasdaq IPO at the bottom of its price range last week.

Wanda Sports, the owner of Swiss sports marketing firm Infront Sports & Media AG as well as World Triathlon Corp, the organiser and promoter of the Ironman race, also cut the number of ADSs on sale to 28 million from 33.33 million, it said in the prospectus.

Wanda Sports said it plans to use the IPO proceeds to repay debt, fund strategic investments and for general corporate purposes.

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The company, which owns sports properties and generates revenue from events, sponsorship and media production, reported a profit of 54 million euros (S$82.1 million) in 2018, a 31 per cent drop from one year earlier. It reported a loss of 8.6 million euros in the first three months of 2019, the prospectus showed.

The IPO follows a string of asset sales by parent Dalian Wanda which had built an empire with businesses as varied as real estate, sports and films. In 2015, the conglomerate bought Infront Sports & Media and World Triathlon for US$1.2 billion and US$650 million respectively.

However the group, owned by Wang Jianlin, one of China's richest men, began selling assets as the government in recent years discouraged overseas deals dependent on high leverage.

It has offloaded domestic and overseas holdings, including stakes in cinema operator AMC Entertainment and Spanish soccer club Atletico Madrid and a handful of property developments.

Wanda Sports is due to start trading on Friday under the symbol "WSG" on the Nasdaq.

Citigroup, Deutsche Bank and Morgan Stanley are the leading banks on the IPO.


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