Shares in the delivery arm of Chinese e-commerce giant JD.com rallied as much as 14% on its stock market debut in Hong Kong on Friday after raising more than US$3 billion in the financial hub’s second-biggest initial public offering this year.
The listing of JD Logistics comes despite concerns about the IPO market in the city following a series of tepid performances by new companies, while there are also concerns about Beijing’s crackdown on some of China’s biggest e-commerce companies.
The firm’s price rallied to a high of HK$47.75 soon after trading began, well up from its starting price of HK$40.36, before settling back slightly. JD.com was slightly lower.
It had raised $3.2 billion from the IPO, less than the $5.4 billion clocked up by mainland TikTok rival Kuaishou, which more than tripled on its market debut in February.
JD Logistics has a huge network of delivery lines covering cold-chain, bulky deliveries and “last mile” logistics, and its army of red delivery staff are a daily sight across mainland China.
And officials said they would plow the cash raised back into the firm and look to expand overseas with an eye on Europe.
“Frankly speaking, the focus for next few years will still be growth,” Chief Executive Officer Yu Rui said in an interview with Bloomberg Television.
“We will focus on business expansion and revenue growth for the next several years. Our net margin will keep improving in the long-term.”
Hong Kong has for the past 18 months seen a flurry of mainland tech firms list in the city, part of a drive to list closer to home as relations between China and the United States sour.
Among them was JD.com, which raised $4 billion in June last year, while its heath unit JD Health raked in $3.5 billion in December.
Another tech firm, NetEase, raised $2.7 billion and Beijing-Shanghai High Speed Railway’s chalked up a $4.3 billion listing in January last year.
But the financial hub – which has been rocked by years of protests and political tensions – was dealt another blow in November when Ant Group, the financial arm of Alibaba, was forced to pull its world-record $35 billion listing under pressure from Beijing.
Last year Hong Kong raked in an impressive $49 billion in IPOs overall.