Hi there. It’s Brady here to start off your week.
Yet another company in China has abandoned its designs for an initial public offering in the United States. Red, which is called Xiaohongshu at home, called off plans to float shares in New York. The company is unique in that it is a beauty-focused social commerce platform that hosts all forms of user-generated content. An investor said its IPO could give Red a valuation of USD 10 billion.
If you follow our coverage on KrASIA, you know the rules for tech firms are becoming stricter in China, and regulators are trying to keep Chinese companies at home as they mature and seek a presence on bourses. So far, it has been all stick and no carrot—see how officials from seven government agencies were dispatched to Didi’s offices on Friday to begin their investigations into, well, everything.
For companies that are big enough to go public—ByteDance, Gen Z-focused social network Soulgate, and Alibaba-backed LinkDoc, to name a few—doing so in Shanghai, Shenzhen, or Hong Kong is no mean feat. The crux of the matter is that the requirements are stricter on this side of the Pacific than in the US.
One company we’re watching is fully cashierless convenience store operator Bianlifeng, which recently filed confidentially for an IPO in the US with a target to raise USD 500 million. Will this company also backtrack? Or will it set a new standard for Chinese tech firms seeking capital on public markets overseas?
- Asia is fertile ground for central bank digital currencies.
- Paytm files draft prospectus for mega USD 2.2 billion IPO.
- Alibaba’s map app AutoNavi evolves into an open service platform.
- Merck Accelerator China announces 2021 cohort with focus on AI and biotech.
- SoftBank-backed Oyo receives USD 660 million loan from global investors to clear debts.
- White Rhino’s autonomous delivery system gets tune-up with new investment.
- Technical assessment and hiring platform ShowMeBug bags USD 15 million Series A from Sequoia Capital and Hillhouse Capital.
- “Technology may bring changes, but taste is timeless,” says Randy Kartadinata, CEO of Mangkokku.