Ant Group Replies to CSRC, Gets Closer to IPO
Unlike Tencent's fintech entity, the company claims to be primarily targeting merchants.
On September 7, Ant Group replied to an inquiry by China Securities Regulatory Commission (CSRC) as part of the former's IPO process, with some main concerns from the state answered by the Hangzhou-founded company. Here are two selected ones in regard to the industry competition.
Despite their common origin, Ant Group and Alibaba are not under the same actual controller as Jack Ma controls Ant – with over 50% of the shares in total – but not the Alibaba Group. Also, the two companies focus on different domains. Therefore, they have a certain business independence. Furthermore, Ant states that the digital payment services it provides target merchants – which is different from other companies, such as Tencent’s WeChat Pay.
The dual-listing plan of Ant Group had fired up the entire market and would probably become the largest IPO ever in world history, and its process is indeed under the world's attention. Here is a look back.
In early July, there was a rumor in the market that Ant was planning an IPO but this was rejected by the company. Two weeks later, on July 20, it officially announced the dual-listing plan on Hong Kong and Shanghai bourses and ignited the stock market as all Alibaba-related stocks shot upwards.
In the following weeks, Ant received pre-listing tutoring from China International Capital Corporation (CICC) and China Securities Cooperation (CSC). Very soon, it released the prospectus on August 25, with the outstanding financial results first revealed and a statement produced that the outstanding shares would be over 10%.
On September 2, industry resources said that Ant was mulling over increasing the number of shares sold therein, with USD 30 million raised under the plan. Now, the company has released its replies on the first round of inquiries, only 13 days since it officially filed for the IPO.
Ant Group is going full steam ahead in its movement toward the listings in October.