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Chinese Tech News Site 36Kr Flops in Tough Week for U.S. IPOs

Yueqi Yang

(Bloomberg) -- 36Kr Holdings Inc., a Chinese news website that tracks the country’s startups, fell 10% in its Nasdaq debut, capping another disappointing week for U.S. IPOs.

The company’s first-day share drop Friday followed weeks of of poor performances by initial public offerings on U.S. exchanges as investor demand slips. Next week, no listings are currently scheduled in U.S. exchanges, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

GFL Environmental Inc., which aimed to raise as much as $2.1 billion in what might have been the largest listing ever by a Canadian company, canceled a share sale that was set for Wednesday.

It had marketed the shares at $20 to $24 each, but only got support to price them at $18 based on investor demand, people familiar with the matter told Bloomberg News. Rather than pricing them below the target range, the company decided against a listing for less than “fair value,” said Chief Executive Officer Patrick Dovigi.

36Kr, the Beijing-based media and services company, earlier aimed to raise as much as $63 million. Instead, it settled for $20 million after slashing the size of the offering by almost two-thirds and pricing its shares at $14.50, the bottom of marketed range.

That diminished share sale coincides with what existing shareholders, including ride-hailing company Didi Chuxing Technology Co. and phone-maker Xiaomi Corp., had indicated they were interested in buying, according to the company’s filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Of five other U.S. IPOs this week that raised from $40 million to $60 million each, three -- Galera Therapeutics Inc., Tela Bio Inc. and Silvergate Capital Corp. -- priced their shares below the marketed ranges. Centogene NV and Q&K International Group Ltd. priced their shares at the bottom of their ranges.

Another company, 89bio Inc., that was expected to price its IPO this week to raise as much as $74 million, hasn’t done so. On Thursday, fitness apparel brand Hylete withdrew its IPO plan to raise up to $16.7 million.

To contact the reporter on this story: Yueqi Yang in New York at yyang492@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Polina Noskova at pnoskova@bloomberg.net, Bradley Davis, Michael Hytha

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