China's first online-only insurer, Zhong An Online Property and Casualty Insurance, is planning to speed up its Hong Kong initial public offering. It aims to start trading in July or August and wants to raise HK$15.6 billion, mainland media reported.
Zhong An, whose major shareholders include Tencent Holdings (0700) and Alibaba Group Holding affiliate Ant Financial, has long aimed to list in Hong Kong but has not yet filed its application to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.
Analysts said the regulators will be more probing and need more time to approve the application since the concept of online insurance is new.
The Shanghai-based company explored a mainland listing but the waiting time was too long. The company needs to come to Hong Kong to go public and raise fresh capital to expand its business, reports said.
Alvin Cheung Chi-wai, associate director at Prudential Brokerage, said if Zhong An's application is successful, it will bring opportunities to the listing market in Hong Kong. However, he thought that Zhong An might have missed the perfect time to list since the second half of the year might not be right.
The company chose Credit Suisse, JPMorgan and UBS to lead the IPO.
Zhong An mainly provides insurance services in terms of cars, medical care and online shopping. The insurance revenue in 2016 increased by 49 percent year on year to HK$3.4 billion.
But the income growth has slowed significantly compared to the figure in 2015. The insurance revenue rose by 189 percent in 2015 from the same period a year before.
Net profit was HK$9.37 million last year, dropping dramatically by 80 percent year-on-year, mainland media said.