Alibaba goes to Hong Kong
Indu Perepu
In November 2019, China-based e-commerce giant Alibaba announced a secondary listing of its shares on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. In the world’s biggest cross-border secondary listing to date, the company offered 500 million new ordinary shares at HK$ 176. Alibaba was listed on the New York Stock Exchange in 2014, in a US$ 25 billion IPO, which remains the largest IPO globally.
Though Jack Ma, the co-founder and the then Chairman of Alibaba intended to list the company in Hong Kong in 2014, the plan was rejected by the local authorities. In 2018, Jack Ma expressed his interest in returning to Hong Kong after the exchange made a few changes in its policies. Finally in 2019, Alibaba announced its secondary listing. Analysts said that through this listing Alibaba was establishing a base outside the US, after the mounting US-China trade dispute. Though listing in China could be an option, Alibaba was considered too big for the Chinese market, which made it choose Hong Kong.
The issue that opened on November 14 was oversubscribed 40 times. The shares started trading on November 27 and closed at HK$ 187.60, rising 6.6% on their debut.

The listing came as a shot in the arm for Hong Kong that was besieged by protests, political crisis, and an economy that was under recession. With the listing, the Hong Kong Stock Exchange emerged on the top of list of IPO Capital Rakings in 2019.
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