Lufax, one of chinas biggest online lending platforms, has announced plans for an us initial public offering even as the trump administration pushes ahead with plans to delist companies from the country.
The business, controlled by chinas largest insurer ping an insurance, was valued at $39.4bn in a funding round in early 2019. a filing with the us securities and exchange commission late on wednesday does not say how much it plans to raise in the new york stock exchange listing or provide a timeline.
Lufaxs debut will add to a steady stream of listing activity by chinese companies on us markets this year, despite rising geopolitical tensions between the two countries that have escalated ahead of the us election next month.
The trump administration has said it will delist chinese companies from its markets if they do not provide us regulators full access to their audit reports. that has prompted chinese groups, including ecommerce companies alibaba and , to raise billions of dollars in hong kong to hedge the risk of being removed from us exchanges.
In its filing to the sec, lufax flagged risks from the impact of the covid-19 pandemic, political unrest in hong kong and us sanctions on chinese companies as factors that could have a material adverse effect on our business, prospects, financial condition and results of operations.
In the year to date, 26 chinese companies have sold shares worth $9bn in wall street ipos, compared with just $3.5bn across 25 deals in the whole of 2019, according to data from dealogic.
Originally launched as a peer-to-peer lending platform in 2011, lufax has evolved into an online wealth manager that facilitates loans from banks to retail borrowers, including small business owners.
The companys net profits were just over $1bn in the six months to june, on total income of $3.6bn, according to the us filing.
The listing, anticipated for several years, was delayed in 2017 after chinese regulators clamped down on the p2p sector. that came after a series of scandals rocked chinas nascent online finance sector, which has expanded rapidly over the past decade.
Listing activity by chinese companies has gathered pace in recent months. ant group, the chinese online payments company, said in august that it would sell at least 10 per cent of its shares in hong kong and shanghai offerings that could give the company a valuation of $200bn to $300bn.
Ke holdings, which owns online property platform beike zhaofang, raised about $2bn in august, in the biggest chinese ipo in the us in two years.
Lufax and ping an declined to comment on the proposed offering.
Goldman sachs, bofa securities, ubs, hsbc and china pa securities are the lead underwriters on the deal.