Ant Group’s world-leading IPO still possible, says Chinese investor

Liu Sikiang, Vice President of Fansun Technology and Financial Group, Hani Securities, Arjun Kharpal, CNBC Senior Correspondent, speaks at LN Garden Hotel Nansi Guangzhou on November 17, 2020 in Nansha during Day 1 of CNBC East Tech West. Guangzhou, China.

Zhong zhi | Getty Image Entertainment | Getty Images

Ant group is still able to bring the world’s largest IPO One of the country’s major investors says that even the Chinese regulatory hurdles overshadow the financial technology giant.

Liu Qiang, vice president of Fosun Technology & Financial Group, which owns a small stake in Ant Group, said the fintech giant’s access to the underlying technology and ecosystem of undersanded customers is a strong investment proposition.

“I still believe they can make the record,” Liu, who is the vice president of Hani Securities, told CNBC’s Arjun Kharpal on Tuesday. He was speaking as part of CNBC’s annual East Tech West conference, which this year is being held both remotely and on the ground, in Nansha district of Guangzhou, China.

Increased financial regulation

The much anticipated $ 34.5 billion dual listing of Ant Group was abruptly suspended on November 3. Subsequently, their leaders, including Comptroller Jack Ma, were summoned and interviewed by Chinese regulators. Days later, officials stressed the need to further regulate the country’s fintech industry, including microlending.

Liu welcomed the regulatory move, noting that financial products that are both online and offline should be regulated. Indeed, he said the clampdown could “force players to put in more effort to educate users” and “move investors to be more sophisticated and invest more” before such steps were taken.

Liu Sikiang, Vice President of Fusun Technology and Financial Group, Vice President of Honey Securities, speaks during Day 1 of CNBC East Tech West on November 17, 2020 at LN Garden Hotel Nansha Guangzhou in Guangzhou, China.

Zhong zhi | Getty Image Entertainment | Getty Images

The ant group, for its part, can handle that pressure, Liu said.

He said that it is one of the “few” companies that can manage “all three dimensions” needed for a financial technology company: capital flows, data flows and commerce flows. However, he refused to put a price on any subsequent listings.

“I can’t estimate how much they can raise. It depends on the capital market,” he said.

Opportunity after a kovid

The postponement comes against the backdrop of the coronovirus epidemic, which has seen a rapid embrace of financial technology services, particularly in China. Ant Group is ready to take advantage of that boom with its large ecosystem of small merchant customers, Liu said.

I think the authorities will continue to look at the market and give directions for development.

Liu Qiang

Vice President, Fosun Technology & Financial Group

Already, China is a world leader in financial technology. Today, the country is home to a $ 29 trillion mobile payment market in the country, and is poised to become the world’s first cashless society, according to a fintech report by the South China Morning Post.

Any post-Kovid recovery efforts will accelerate, said Liu, who predicted an annual growth rate of 50% for the industry over the next five years.

However, further development in the fintech industry will also likely be met with additional regulation, Liu said.

“I think the authorities will continue to look at the market and give directions for development,” he said.

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