China Fintech Firm Lufax Set to Raise $2.4 Billion in U.S. IPO

Chinese financial technology firm Lufax Holding Ltd. opened below its offer price after raising $2.4 billion in a U.S. initial public offering priced at the top of an indicative range.

Lufax opened at $11.60 on Friday after the company sold 175 million American depositary shares for $13.50 each, according to a statement.

The stock traded at $13.15 at 11:55 a.m. in New York, giving the company a market value of about $32.1 billion.

Lufax, which debuted just days after U.S. stocks saw their biggest drop since June, priced one of the biggest IPOs by a Chinese company in the U.S. this year.

The company, backed by China’s largest insurer by market value, Ping An Insurance Group Co., marketed its American depositary shares for $11.50 to $13.50 each. Two ADS represent one ordinary share.

The IPO coincides with a week of significant volatility. The S&P 500 Index suffered its worst rout in four months on Wednesday amid worries about the economic hit of the pandemic. On Thursday U.S. stocks bounced back, with investors encouraged by better-than-forecast economic data. The S&P 500 gained 1.2%, the most since Oct. 12.

Lufax, which was once among China’s largest peer-to-peer lenders, has morphed into a financial giant offering wealth management and retail lending services.

Chinese authorities launched a sweeping crackdown on the unruly P2P sector three years ago, forcing the company to transform its business. Its assets under management dropped by 6.1% in 2019 due to “asset portfolio adjustment and restrictions on consumer finance products,” Ping An said in February. Wealth management transaction volumes fell by almost 30%.

Lufax is going public at the same time as fintech behemoth Ant Group Co., which is set to raise $34.5 billion in listings in Shanghai and Hong Kong, making it the world’s biggest IPO on record.

The company plans to use the funds from the IPO for purposes which may include investment in product development, sales and marketing activities, technology infrastructure, acquisitions or investments, according to the prospectus.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc., Bank of America Corp., UBS Group AG, HSBC Holdings Plc and China PA Securities Co. led Lufax’s offering. Its shares are trading on New York Stock Exchange under the symbol LU.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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