Salem Radio Network News Monday, September 26, 2022

Science

China EV maker Leapmotor launches up to $1 billion Hong Kong IPO

By Scott Murdoch

HONG KONG (Reuters) -Chinese electric vehicle maker Zhejiang Leapmotor Technology is aiming to raise $1.03 billion in an initial public offering (IPO) launched on Tuesday, according to its regulatory filings.

The company is selling 130.82 million shares in the deal that will be the largest IPO in Hong Kong in 2022. The shares will be sold in a price range of HK$48 to HK$62 each, the filings showed.

Leapmotor had planned to raise $1.5 billion but reduced the size of the deal after a lukewarm response from investors, sources previously told Reuters.

The IPO was paused a fortnight ago following the company’s initial briefings with potential investors while financial markets were volatile, the sources said.

Leapmotor has locked five cornerstone investors – led by the Zhejiang and Jinhua industrial funds – who will buy up to $308.33 million shares, according to the filings.

Leapmotor produces four electric vehicle models that mainly target China’s middle- and lower-end mass market in a 79,500 yuan-300,000 yuan ($11,466.40-$43,269.44) price range, according to its website and prospectus filed with the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.

The company was ranked 12th in terms of sales in the first seven months among all EV makers in China, with a market share of 2.3%, according to data from the China Passenger Car Association.

The majority of the cash raised will be used for research and development and expanding production capacity, the filings showed.

($1 = 7.8488 Hong Kong dollars)

(Reporting by Scott Murdoch in Hong Kong; Editing by Cynthia Osterman and Kim Coghill)

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