Regulatory Holdups Slow Ant Group’s IPO Plans

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A window is closing for Chinese financial-technology giant Ant Group Co. to pull off a record-breaking initial public offering ahead of the U.S. presidential election, as regulators in mainland China and Hong Kong have yet to sign off on the company’s plans to go public.
Ant, the owner of popular Chinese mobile-payments network Alipay and the world’s most valuable startup, in August filed IPO documents with stock exchanges in Hong Kong and Shanghai. The company could raise more than $30 billion in the concurrent offerings and earn a market valuation between $200 billion and $300 billion, The Wall Street Journal previously reported.
Hangzhou, China-based Ant, an affiliate of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. , was earlier targeting to list its shares in both markets by late October, according to investors who were briefed by bankers working on the sale.
Some company insiders had also wanted to complete the IPO before the U.S. elections on Nov. 3, to avoid running into potential choppy financial markets in the ensuing days and weeks, according to people familiar with the matter. Tensions between the U.S. and China have also been high, and could escalate depending on the election outcome.
Spokespeople for Ant have previously said …

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