Alibaba delays $15bn Hong Kong listing amid violent protests

Alibaba’s Hong Kong listing is being delayed indefinitely as the growing political crisis in the region begins to affect its financial markets, Reuters reported.

China’s biggest ecommerce company was due to list on the Hong Kong stock exchange at the end of August and was expected to raise up to $15 billion (£12.36 billion), the highest value global follow-up listing in seven years.

Hong Kong has been thrown into dramatic political and financial instability since pro-democracy protests began more than 11 weeks ago, while tensions between the territory and Beijing have escalated to concerning levels.

READ MORE: Alibaba revenues jump 42% as it brushes off trade war concerns

Sources speaking to Reuters said that it would be “very unwise” for Alibaba to launch its listing “anytime soon” until the climate has settled down.

“It would certainly annoy Beijing by offering Hong Kong such a big gift given what’s going on in the city,” the source, who asked to remain anonymous added.

They added that Alibaba made the decision during a board meeting last week ahead of the release of its second quarter figures, which reported a revenue rise of 42 per cent to 114.92 billion yuan (£13.47 billion), coming above analyst expectations of 111.73 billion yuan (£13.09 billion).

Alibaba’s listing, likely to be the world’s biggest this year, would provide a needed boost for the Hong Kong stock exchange, which is struggling to keep up with New York.

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