Chinese microblogging platform Weibo is looking to raise US$547 million in Hong Kong. This comes as US steps up scrutiny of Chinese companies and listings in the Hong Kong market are seen as a way to mitigate the risk of removal from US exchanges, and access to investors closer to home.
Weibo is a Twitter-like platform which first launched in 2009 and was one of the first social media platforms in China. It allows for netizens to create, discover and distribute content. According to the firm, Weibo enables its advertising and marketing customers to promote their brands, products and services to users and generates a substantial majority of its revenues from the sale of advertising and marketing services, including the sale of social display advertisement and promoted marketing offerings.
Designed with a "mobile first" philosophy, Weibo displays content in a simple information feed format and offers native advertisement that conform to the information feed on our platform. Weibo, which launched in 2009 and is among the earliest social media platforms in China, had 566 million monthly active users as of June, it said in a filing.
According to a statement from the firm, it plans to use the proceeds to grow its user base and user engagement to “enhance its content ecosystem, for research and development to enhance its user experience and monetisation capabilities”. With the funding, it says it will “selectively pursuing strategic alliances, investments and acquisitions, and for working capital and general corporate purposes”.
Meanwhile, in recent times, China has been cracking down on internet companies. In September, the government cut the amount of time children can spend playing online drastically, as online gamers under the age of 18 will only be allowed to play for an hour on Fridays, weekends and holidays.
According to a report on Economic Daily, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT), the Chinese government said it will look to foster a fair and orderly market environment.
Malaysian singer Namewee blocked by Weibo after releasing satirical song
HK Olympic medalist Doo Hoi-kem goes viral on Weibo after CCTV interview
Weibo sacks PR director over suspected bribery
Weibo reportedly removes Kris Wu's account after arrest