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Tencent-backed Chinese realty company KE Holdings eyes US$2b US IPO

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KE Holdings, a China-based real estate services provider backed by Tencent, said on Friday it will aim to raise up to US$2 billion in its US initial public offering (IPO).

[BENGALURU] KE Holdings, a China-based real estate services provider backed by Tencent, said on Friday it will aim to raise up to US$2 billion in its US initial public offering (IPO).

The company, which owns real estate brokerage brand Lianjia and housing transactions platform Beike, said it would offer 106 million American depositary shares (ADS), priced between US$17 and US$19 a piece, and will list on the NYSE under the symbol "BEKE". Each ADS represents three class A ordinary shares.

KE Holdings said the Covid-19 pandemic had hurt its business, as agents were forced to stay at home and stores across China were closed, but business recovered during the second quarter, leading to a 39 per cent rise in revenue for the first half of the year.

"People are increasingly demanding higher standards of living condition, and the demand is further strengthened by the Covid-19 pandemic," its founder Zuo Hui said in a filing.

The IPO comes at a time when Nasdaq has tightened its listings rules with an eye on curbing IPOs of Chinese companies that are closely held by insiders and are not transparent about their accounting.

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US President Donald Trump on Friday unveiled sweeping bans on US transactions with the Chinese owners of messaging app WeChat and video-sharing app TikTok.

KE Holdings said Tencent, private equity firm Hillhouse Capital, Sequoia Capital and Fidelity International and others have planned to invest a total of at least US$800 million.

Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, China Renaissance, JPMorgan and CICC are among underwriters for the IPO.

REUTERS

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