Reuters: Didi seeks 2021 HK IPO at RM249b value

HONG KONG • Didi Chuxing has begun discussions with investment bankers about an IPO in Hong Kong next year that could value the Chinese ride-hailing leader at US$60 billion (RM249 billion), Reuters reported, citing unidentified people.

The start-up initiated the talks after it began generating a profit during the second quarter, it reported. Didi’s also considering a new fundraising round ahead of an IPO to boost its valuation, Reuters said.

“Didi does not have any definitive IPO plan and we don’t comment on market speculation,” a Didi representative said in a statement to Bloomberg on Tuesday.

Didi, backed by SoftBank Group Corp and Tencent Holdings Ltd, had fought off Uber Technologies Inc in China and seen its valuation climb to US$56 billion. But it has struggled to sustain growth in the face of a regulatory crackdown and then the Covid-19 pandemic.

Its shares were said to have traded privately at a discount to its peak valuation of as much as 40%, Bloomberg reported in January. Uber’s own IPO last year proved disappointing, raising questions about prospects for the sector.

Still, the IPO market has heated up this year, particularly in Hong Kong. JD.com Inc and NetEase Inc have raised billions in the market, while smaller companies such as Yeahka Ltd have seen their shares soar with strong demand. — Bloomberg