|Bid||0.00 x 0|
|Ask||0.00 x 0|
|Day's Range||67.72 - 69.24|
|52 Week Range||40.04 - 72.90|
|Beta (5Y Monthly)||1.02|
|PE Ratio (TTM)||50.55|
|Forward Dividend & Yield||0.15 (0.23%)|
|Ex-Dividend Date||May 14, 2020|
|1y Target Est||484.90|
(Bloomberg) -- South Africa’s main stock index erases gains of as much as 0.4% to fall 0.5% by 9:40am in Johannesburg, as weakness in banks and MTN Group counter a rise in heavyweight BHP and a soaring Shoprite.The losses come amid a resurgence in Covid-19 cases in parts of the U.S. and Europe, raising concern that the economic rebound is stalling. Risk appetite has also taken a hit amid the ratcheting up of U.S.-China tensions, with the Trump administration expected to unveil new measures shortly against Chinese-owned software deemed to pose national-security risks.NOTE: Futures, Asia Stocks Trade Mixed; Treasuries Dip: Markets WrapWeaker rand pulls index for bank stocks down 3.2% to the lowest intraday level in more than three weeksNOTE: Rand in Bearish Turn as Volatility Rises: Inside South AfricaFirstRand -3.5%, Standard Bank -2.8%, Absa -3%, Capitec Bank +3.1%, Nedbank -3.2%, Investec -2.5%MTN falls for the third day, down 2.3%.NOTE: MTN Zakhele Futhi Entering Into Talks With MTN on DividendRand-hedge Richemont shakes off weaker rand, falls 1%Shoprite +7.8%, biggest intraday jump in two months, as the company publishes its trading statement NOTE: Shoprite Sees Better South African Trade With Market-Share GainsNaspers, with a 20% weighting on the index, rises 0.6%, as partly owned Tech giant Tencent advances in Hong KongNaspers subsidiary, Prosus, which holds the company’s 31% stake in Tencent, rises 1.2%Diversified miners join gold and platinum producers to lift the gauge for mining stocks for the second day, up 0.9%BHP +1.6%, Anglo American +0.6%, Gold Fields +0.8%, Harmony Gold Mining +2.2%, Sibanye Stillwater +0.5%, Northam Platinum +1%, African Rainbow Minerals +0.9%, Royal Bafokeng Platinum +1.1%, DRDGold +0.45Foreigners were net sellers of South African stocks for the second day Friday, disposing of 3.1b rand worth of shares, according to bourse operator JSE. This is the largest outflow since June 10.NEWS:South African Lockdown Tax Loss Exceeds Value of Two Virus LoansSouth Africa’s Eskom Requests Bids for Battery-Power StorageFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Bank of America Corp. were left off Ant Group’s upcoming stock sale in Hong Kong because of their past work with rivals of its affiliate Alibaba, according to people familiar with the matter.Bankers have been told by senior executives at Alibaba Group Holding Ltd., which owns a third of Ant, that they should refrain from doing deals for its competitors if they want business from Jack Ma’s sprawling empire, the people said. Ant has kicked off plans to go public in Hong Kong and Shanghai in offerings that could top Saudi Aramco’s record $29 billion IPO.The directive shows that Wall Street banks are having to make early bets on which firms to stick with in China, especially as juggernauts like Alibaba and Tencent Holdings Ltd. extend their tentacles into hundreds of businesses in finance, transportation, retail and entertainment.“The duopoly issue is not unique to China, but the scale and scope of Alibaba and Tencent’s business operations create an excruciating dilemma for investment banks,” said Andy Mok, a senior research fellow at the Center for China and Globalization in Beijing. “Alibaba and Tencent’s businesses are so big, you can risk being blocked out of a significant future revenue stream.”While bankers everywhere have to be careful doing work for their clients’ rival firms, Chinese conglomerates are taking it to a new level. Even though banks have firewalls to ensure separate teams handle deals for the likes of Alibaba and Tencent, that’s proving to not be enough, the people familiar said.Chinese clients are much more likely than their counterparts in the U.S. or Europe to demand non-compete commitments as a show of loyalty, and to ensure that sensitive strategies don’t land in the hands of competitors. And with fewer deals to go around, bankers in the hyper-competitive Chinese market have little choice but to comply.Though minor distribution roles on Ant’s Hong Kong IPO are still up for grabs, those don’t offer the out-sized fees that banks can expect from leading the sale.“Competition has increased and Chinese issuers have gotten strong bargaining power,” said Bob Dodds, who worked as an investment banker at China International Capital Corp. before setting up DRP Capital Ltd. to advise on China-related deals.Goldman and Bank of America’s recent work with Alibaba rivals include $7.7 billion in stock sales for Tencent-backed Pinduoduo Inc. and JD.com Inc. in the last two years, helping these companies build their war chests to take on their larger competitor in the hotly contested e-commerce arena.The two banks have reaped at least $70 million from advising Pinduoduo and JD.com on stock deals, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The figure doesn’t include the undisclosed fees of a $1 billion bond sale by Pinduoduo in September and the $4.5 billion secondary listing by JD.com in June.Representatives at Goldman and Bank of America declined to comment. Ant and Alibaba declined to comment in separate emailed statements.IPO BankersAnt is aggressively competing with Tencent’s WeChat Pay to maintain its dominance of China’s $29 trillion mobile payments space. It has been pitching digital payment services to the local arms of KFC Holding Co. and Marriott International Inc. as it transforms its Alipay app into an online mall for everything from loans and travel services to food delivery.Alipay’s share of mobile payments has increased for three consecutive quarters, rising to 55.1% in the fourth quarter, according to consultant iResearch. Tencent has 38.9% of the market.Ant hired Citigroup Inc., JPMorgan Chase & Co., Morgan Stanley and CICC to lead its Hong Kong IPO. The sale is expected to raise more than $10 billion and could value the firm at $200 billion, people familiar have said. Ant hasn’t selected banks for the Shanghai portion, though global firms will probably be left out because lead underwriters for any IPO on the tech-focused Star board must buy shares in the deal.Banks leading the Ant IPO in Hong Kong have fewer conflicts. While Morgan Stanley earned $6.4 million for a junior role in Pinduoduo’s stock sale last year -- about half of Goldman’s haul -- Citigroup and JPMorgan weren’t involved in those deals, Bloomberg data shows.(Adds details on Alipay and WeChat Pay’s market share in 13th paragraph. An earlier version of the story was corrected to show Ant has kicked off its IPO process.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Apple Inc. removed more than 30,000 apps, 90% of them games, from its iPhone App Store in China on Saturday, Qimai Research Institute said.The crackdown, which began in June and escalated in July, ends the unofficial practice of allowing games to be published while awaiting approval from Beijing’s censors, which all titles that are paid or offer in-app purchases must obtain. The loophole existed only on the iPhone, as local Chinese Android vendors already adhered to the rule without exception. After the Saturday purge, there were about 179,000 games remaining in Apple’s China store, of which 160,000 were free.Apple had earlier warned developers and publishers that their iOS games will need licenses to continue operating in China, and the company explicitly said any unlicensed games will be banned and removed after July 31, according to a notice viewed by Bloomberg News.Read: Apple Set to Nix Thousands of Unlicensed IPhone Games in ChinaChina is one of Apple’s largest markets for selling digital goods and services, with the iPhone maker typically taking a 30% cut from such transactions. The Cupertino, California-based company’s culling efforts highlight a more forceful stance from the Chinese government when it comes to gaming.Citing concerns about the proliferation of addiction among minors and the dissemination of offensive content, regulators now adopt a much stricter and slower review process than before they temporarily halted all approvals in 2018. Imported games are under particularly tight scrutiny, and the App Store loophole served as a last resort for getting some of them distributed in the world’s largest mobile game arena.Online advertisers like Tencent Holdings Ltd. and ByteDance Ltd. are likely to also suffer a blow, as they can expect to lose a chunk of their gaming ad buyers.(Updates with additional details and background from second paragraph)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Didi Chuxing is the big dog of China's ride-sharing business, and an increasing factor internationally. They have been doing business in Mexico for two years. Should you invest in Didi Chuxing stock?Source: Shutterstock Didi is backed by big caches of venture capital. That includes Uber (NYSE:UBER) itself, which took a 20% stake (since watered down) in selling its China operations to Didi in 2016.Now some of those investors want out. Well, at least one wants out. That's Softbank (OTCMKTS:SFTBY), which plunged $10 billion into Didi over four years and is now raising cash for its second Vision Fund.InvestorPlace - Stock Market News, Stock Advice & Trading TipsThe IPO, if it happens, would be in Hong Kong, which can take both Chinese and foreign capital. The valuation is rumored to be $80 billion. Interesting?Didi claims to have 90% of the Chinese ride-hailing market and 550 million users. It has begun testing a robotic taxi service in Shanghai. The service will be available in limited areas. Cabs currently have a "safety" driver riding in them. * 7 Dividend Stocks to Buy for Beginners to Income Investing Didi has a lot in common with Uber in that it loses a lot of money. It was also hit hard by the novel coronavirus, which took out about half its business after the government quarantined Wuhan. The government has hampered it in other ways, requiring separate licenses and not handing many out.Getting numbers out of the private company is difficult, although shares do trade. Crunchbase lists 21 fundraisers with 32 investors. On its S-1 last year, Uber listed the value of its 15.4% stake in Didi at $7.95 billion.Like many Chinese companies, Didi raises money by partial spin-offs of new operations. This gives investors some visibility into its business. In May, when Softbank put $500 million into Didi's robo-taxi service, Didi President Jean Liu said the ride-hailing business was profitable. She didn't give out any figures. Motivated SellerThe robo-taxi story also told readers why Softbank wants out, and why Didi may need to IPO. The Japanese company's Arab backers are spooked by the failure of its first Vision Fund and haven't ponied-up for Vision Fund 2.The story on the rumored IPO, from Caixin Global, gave an $80 billion figure for Didi's valuation and said it had $7.2 billion in cash. The story cited sources, and it's likely at least one was Softbank. Caixin has since cast doubt on the $80 billion figure, estimating the value of the company closer to $56 billion. More Than UberOver the last few years Didi has become more than an Uber clone. In addition to the robo-taxi service, it has rolled out a home delivery app, a logistics service, and a service called Huaxiaozhu with rides as low as 79 cents and its own app. The company also offers bicycle sharing, designated driver services, and a ride-sharing service called Qingcai, which means "vegetables."Didi has also signed up with China's Central Bank to take "digital yuan," a sovereign digital currency. The Bottom LineAll these efforts, and the fact that China is opening while America is closing, help make Didi look interesting, if the price is right.Once it lists in Hong Kong, Didi would become an ADR (American depositary receipt) available to American investors on the OTC Market just like Softbank or Korea's Samsung Electronics (OTCMKTS:SSNLF).While most Chinese start-ups are sponsored by a larger company like Tencent Holdings (OTCMKTS:TCEHY), Didi is an exception. That's because it has investments from both Tencent and Alibaba Group Holdings (NASDAQ:BABA).By partially spinning off things like the robo-taxis, Didi could create its own galactic center. That's why, despite the company's denials, I suspect an IPO is coming. That will happen either when Didi can dictate its own terms, or if it can't get Softbank off its corporate back.Dana Blankenhorn has been a financial and technology journalist since 1978. His latest book is Technology's Big Bang: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow with Moore's Law, essays on technology available at the Amazon Kindle store. Write him at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter at @danablankenhorn. As of this writing he owned shares in BABA. More From InvestorPlace * Why Everyone Is Investing in 5G All WRONG * America's 1 Stock Picker Reveals His Next 1,000% Winner * Revolutionary Tech Behind 5G Rollout Is Being Pioneered By This 1 Company * Radical New Battery Could Dismantle Oil Markets The post Think About Buying the Hong Kong IPO Didi Chuxing appeared first on InvestorPlace.
(Bloomberg) -- Chinese regulators are considering launching an antitrust investigation into Ant Group’s Alipay and Tencent Holdings Ltd.’s WeChat Pay, Reuters reported, citing unidentified sources.The nation’s antitrust watchdog has been gathering information on China’s two dominant online payments services for at least a month on the instigation of the central bank, Reuters reported. An official inquiry would deal a serious blow to Ant’s impending Hong Kong and Shanghai initial public offerings, kick started just weeks ago and potentially the largest floats either city has seen in years.Jack Ma’s Ant Seeks $200 Billion Value in Landmark Dual IPO (4)Alipay and WeChat Pay account for the majority of the mobile payments transactions in China. Alipay’s share of mobile payments has increased for three consecutive quarters, rising to 55.1% in the fourth quarter of 2019, according to research consultant iResearch. Tencent has 38.9% of the market.No decision on whether to proceed with an investigation has been made, according to Reuters.A representative for Ant Group didn’t respond to mobile and text queries. A Tencent spokeswoman didn’t respond to requests for comment.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
China's top antitrust agency is looking at whether to launch a probe into Alipay and WeChat Pay, prompted by the central bank which argues the digital payment giants have used their dominant positions to quash competition, sources with knowledge of the matter said. The State Council's antitrust committee has been gathering information on Alipay, owned by Ant Group which in turn is an affiliate of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd <BABA.N>, as well as on Tencent Holdings Ltd's <0700.HK> WeChat Pay for more than a month, they said.
Whether its customers are spending money — or not — Burberry wants them to have fun as they game their way across the Shenzhen shop floor.
The course of the COVID-19 pandemic is proving impossible to predict, frustrating health officials and governments alike as they struggle to keep the economy alive amid a resurgence of cases. The stock has a 2% dividend yield.
It's no secret that the lockdown led to skyrocketing demand in gaming. But the pandemic could have only accelerated an already growing trend. If we look at its long-term perspective, it's not at all less appealing than this short-term boost. Over the next five years, analysts estimate the gaming industry to expand at a compound annual growth rate of 9.2%.More than gaming- a discussion for sportsmen One of the biggest names among gaming stocks is surely Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA) which will report its earnings today after markets close. EA has garnered investor attention because it engages its players themselves but because it lures sportsmen to discuss their game ratings on social media. It's such a popular discussion that even Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) owned ESPN includes it in its prime-time segment. If we look at its stock performance, it managed to beat EPS estimates 50% of the time and revenue estimates 63% of the time over the last two years.Gaming, cloud, streaming and more! It might be a midcap, but Tencent Holdings (OTC: TCEHY) has such a diverse portfolio that besides gaming, it also covers mobile messaging, cloud, payments, and streaming. Its ecosystem even started overlapping with that of Apple, Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL). In China, it is directly competing with Apple with its mobile messaging app WeChat which provides 300 million integrated Mini Programs to 1.16 billion monthly active users. Tencent is expanding its ecosystem of subscription-based services into gaming, music, and streaming video businesses. Tencent is better diversified and stronger when it comes to revenue and earnings growth and it has offered to buy out and take private search engine Sogou Inc. in a $2.1 billion deal.Mobile gaming As people became inseparable from their smartphones, mobile gaming became another segment that also experienced stellar lockdown during the pandemic. Moreover, it is expected to grow even faster than video games. Over the next few years, it is expected to expand at a compounded annual growth rate of 13.3%. Glu Mobile (NASDAQ: GLUU) existing games like Kim Kardashian: Hollywood and Design Home were behind its stellar first-quarter results. Also, the firm has been hoarding cash recently so it could be planning strategic acquisitions in the near future.Casino gaming Penn National (NASDAQ: PENN) is largely a casino and racetrack operator. But its online gambling presences qualifies it for the gaming list. Roughly half of the states that Penn national operates in have legalized sports betting and, considering that the economy needs to recover as soon as possible from the most severe crisis of modern age, it is reasonable to believe that more will follow suit. Obviously, for Penn to benefit, sports betting needs sports events to resume and the world to go back to normal. We will learn know more when it reports its earnings on August 6.Short-term / Long-term Outlook The world fears the threat of a second wave of the pandemic and a slow return to normalcy. Yet, both of these trends can only benefit gaming. But, pandemic or no, its popularity isn't going anywhere.This article is not a press release and is contributed by a verified independent journalist for IAMNewswire. It should not be construed as investment advice at any time please read the full disclosure . IAM Newswire does not hold any position in the mentioned companies. Press Releases - If you are looking for full Press release distribution contact: firstname.lastname@example.org Contributors - IAM Newswire accepts pitches. If you're interested in becoming an IAM journalist contact: email@example.comThe post 4 Gaming Stocks That Could Entertain Any Investor appeared first on IAM Newswire.See more from Benzinga * Big Tech Earnings, Congress Hearing To Determine Trajectory Of Growth * Monumental Earnings Week Begins on Tuesday * Despite Difficulties, Tesla Delivers Its Fourth Consecutive Quarterly Profit(C) 2020 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.
Shares of Sogou (NYSE: SOGO), China's second-largest online search provider after Baidu (NASDAQ: BIDU), surged over 40% on July 27 after the company received a buyout offer from its top stakeholder, Tencent (OTC: TCEHY).
(Bloomberg) -- Follow Bloomberg on LINE messenger for all the business news and analysis you need.Line Corp., the Japanese messaging service poised to join SoftBank Group Corp., reported a narrower operating loss and a gain in users in the second quarter, bolstering minority shareholders who argue the merger undervalues the company.Its operating loss shrunk to 9.6 billion yen ($91 million) in the three months ended June, from 13.9 billion yen a year ago, the company said Wednesday. Sales rose 5.3% to 58.4 billion yen. Line’s monthly active user base expanded to 166 million in the core markets of Japan, Taiwan, Thailand and Indonesia.SoftBank founder Masayoshi Son engineered a complex deal last year to combine SoftBank’s Yahoo Japan internet business with Line to create a national champion, with the goal of competing more effectively against global giants like Google and Tencent Holdings Ltd. SoftBank and South Korea’s Naver Corp. plan to take Line private and then fold Line and Yahoo Japan into a new joint venture. But the deal has come under attack from overseas hedge funds that said the tender offer price is too low.SoftBank and Naver originally said they would pay about 5,200 yen per share for Line, then raised that price to 5,380 yen a share in December. Line shares closed at 5,560 on Wednesday. The coronavirus outbreak has forced the companies to push back the tender offer, originally expected in May or June, and delay the closing date beyond October. The terms of the deal remain unchanged.The hedge funds have argued that the pandemic has made companies like Line more valuable and pointed out the global rally in technology stocks. Churchill Capital said the more appropriate price is between 6,112 yen and 7,851 yen, according to a July 9 letter to Line seen by Bloomberg News.After taking Line private, SoftBank and Naver plan to undertake a reorganization that will eventually result in a 50-50 ownership of the new company. The combined entity will hold stock in Z Holdings Corp., which will remain public with Yahoo Japan and Line as wholly owned subsidiaries.Advertising sales on Line’s platform, its main source of revenue, rose 3.9% from a year ago. The company’s strategic business, which includes services powered by artificial intelligence and mobile payments, reported a 12% increase in revenue and a loss of 19.5 billion yen.Line’s monthly active users in Japan totaled 84 million, about 3 million more than the same period a year ago and roughly half of their customer base in the core markets. Thailand, its second-biggest market, saw an increase to 47 million, while Indonesian customers declined to 13 million. Taiwan saw little change at 21 million users.(Updates with user detail in the final paragraph)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Leaders in India’s technology industry are urging the country to go even further to protect the interests of local companies against foreign rivals, or risk ceding the world’s fastest growing internet arena to Chinese and American monopolies.Narendra Modi’s administration this month banned 59 Chinese apps in the country, including ByteDance Ltd.’s short-video hit TikTok, a dramatic policy shift aimed at improving local control and data security. In separate interviews, Policybazaar co-founder Yashish Dahiya -- whose company is backed by Tencent Holdings Ltd. -- and MobiKwik frontman Bipin Preet Singh urged Modi to go further. Emboldened by growing hostility against its giant neighbor, they want regulators to curb their access to Indian markets, establish rules to wrest back control of user data and bankroll local startups.“China has long been the bratty kid who thinks it’s OK to grab others’ cake without sharing your own,” Dahiya told Bloomberg News last week. India must strategically reduce market access before its neighbor becomes even more powerful. “If India doesn’t do it now, it can never be done,” said Dahiya, whose online insurance service targets a 2021 IPO at a $3.5 billion value.Dahiya and Singh are breaking with tradition in an Indian startup sector that over the past half-decade has attracted billions from Chinese companies and investment houses from Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. to Hillhouse Capital. Their stance reflects a shift in sentiment after a mid-June Himalayan border clash left 20 soldiers dead -- but also a wave of techno-nationalism as the coronavirus pummels global economies. It coincides with a surge of interest from American giants like Facebook Inc. and Google as India’s nascent digital economy blossoms.“It’s not an easy position to take,” said Dahiya, whose Policybazaar is now trying to raise $250 million of pre-IPO financing. “A sovereign nation has no parent but someone’s got to stop China from misbehaving.”On Tuesday, an official with China’s Indian embassy said Beijing will take “necessary measures” to protect the country’s companies from a ban that threatens their legitimate rights, and urged Modi’s government to reverse “wrongdoings.”Before TikTok overtook YouTube to become India’s most popular social video platform, the dominance of WhatsApp and Amazon.com Inc. and Walmart Inc. in e-commerce had already rankled local businesses. Beijing is now the bigger target, as the world polarizes along U.S.-China lines and American-backed local champions such as Mukesh Ambani’s Jio Platforms emerge. The influx of American investment sets up a potential clash with China’s own internet titans in the future -- provided they’re allowed to operate in the country.That, along with trade barriers erected in just past weeks, may have fired up the entrepreneurs. The government should identify strategic sectors and nurture local startups, MobiKwik’s Singh advocated.“The China versus U.S. battleground is neither China nor the U.S., but India,” said Singh, whose Sequoia Capital-backed payments startup competes with both Google Pay and Alibaba-backed Paytm.“If India’s entire 1.3 billion population is served only by foreign companies, how can that be a good thing?” he said in a telephone interview from his base in New Delhi. “Yet India doesn’t have a single technology giant, it’s become a growth engine for global companies. What is India doing wrong?”Read more: India Builds Trade Barriers With China Amid Border RowIndia’s unprecedented apps ban thwarted the global ambitions of China’s technology giants just as the spotlight is turning on the world’s largest untapped digital frontier. ByteDance and other targeted companies have since attempted negotiations with New Delhi, but they’ll have to contend with more than mere legal obligations.India’s roaring digital economy, with half a billion users and growing, is witnessing pitched battles in everything from online retail and content streaming to messaging and digital payments -- but largely between deep-pocketed foreign corporations. That’s coincided with growth tapering off at Infosys Ltd. and Tata Consultancy Services Ltd., which put India’s tech sector on the map but are now grappling with a fundamental shift to the cloud.While India has attracted over $20 billion in just past months from American giants like Google and Facebook, China has over the years carved out a significant role in India’s tech industry, according to Mumbai-based think-tank Gateway House. Eighteen of India’s 30 unicorns are Chinese-funded, researchers Amit Bhandari, Blaise Fernandes and Aashna Agarwal said in a report. Apart from TikTok, smartphone brands like leader Xiaomi Corp. and Oppo have cornered three-quarters of the market. Firms like Qiming Venture Partners nearly doubled Chinese investments in Indian startups to $3.9 billion in 2019, according to the Economic Times.“I’m not advocating a closed or protectionist environment like China’s, but India needs local champions and also needs to safeguard its data and security,” Singh said. “We need competition, we need choices. But we can’t have a situation where there’s no Indian player in entire segments from search to messaging, social media, ecommerce and payments.”Read more: World Economy’s Sputtering Recovery Threatened by Flaring VirusModi’s government has already set things in motion. It drafted an e-commerce policy that openly champions aid for local startups and oversight on how foreign companies handle data. A government panel recommended a data regulator to oversee monetization and privacy of user information to ensure “maximum social and economic benefits” for Indians. Local startups are enjoying something of a renaissance: TikTok-a-like Roposo is signing up half a million new users an hour.But more is needed, Singh said. The system remains stacked against the hundreds of thousands of would-be entrepreneurs who have to take on global behemoths. The government could limit the influence of foreign capital as it has done in sectors like banking, he added.MobiKwik has “raised $100 million so far and is taking on companies with a collective market value of over $2 trillion,” he said. “We are doing injustice to our entrepreneurs if we stack them against dollars and yuans in every single segment.”(Updates with progress of the ban in the 11th paragraph)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- When the coronavirus put a halt on people’s lives in China in February, Justin Jin’s old university classmates thought about selling face masks to make money. The 21-year-old suggested they instead try their luck with two stocks: Tesla Inc. and Tencent Holdings Ltd.That’s when Jin’s two friends began using the Futubull app, one of the Chinese platforms that allow mainland investors to buy foreign equities. The decision paid off. Both stocks soared as part of a global rally that has enticed a wave of novice investors.“When I first started, there were only three or four friends who used Futu,” Jin said. “Now there are at least three or four dozen.”Thanks to them and many others, Futu Holdings Ltd., a Chinese online brokerage and wealth-management platform, now counts more than 1 million registered users, a 23% increase from the first quarter. Its American depositary receipts have almost quadrupled since a low in March, propelling the fortune of its founder and chairman, Leaf Hua Li, to $1.5 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.Tencent EmployeeLi, 43, was Tencent’s 18th founding employee and left to start Futu after growing frustrated with the software he used to trade Hong Kong stocks, according to a CapitalWatch interview in January. The online broker, backed by the Chinese internet giant, was formally incorporated under Hong Kong law in April 2012. Li owns 40% of its outstanding shares.A company spokesman declined to comment on Li’s net worth.Retail investors have always been a driving force in China’s stock market, but with the pandemic keeping people home, more amateur traders have emerged. Futu reported a 60% surge in new paying clients -- those with assets in their trading accounts -- in the first quarter, with much of it coming from Hong Kong. Big-name stocks like Tencent, Tesla and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. fueled the surge during the peak of China’s coronavirus crisis in February, according to a statement.One of Futu’s main draws is that, unlike mainland competitors, it has licenses that allow users to go beyond the domestic market and buy equities from the U.S. and Hong Kong. This year’s high-profile secondary listings in the city from JD.com Inc. and NetEase Inc. have enticed more investors, as has the months-long rebound in U.S. stocks, according to Bank of China International analyst Nanyang He.“Futu has benefited from strong market sentiments in terms of raising trading velocity and increasing IPO subscription revenue,” He said.Shares SurgeFutu shares have risen 148% since the company listed in New York in March 2019, outpacing rival Up Fintech Holding Ltd., which went public the same month.While the competition is rife -- Chinese brokerage firm Huatai Securities Co. just launched its own U.S. stock-trading app -- Futu is betting on the increasing number of Chinese citizens looking to diversify their investments globally, He said. The company started a series of MSCI index futures products this month.Li began his career at Tencent after receiving a bachelor’s degree in computer science and technology from Hunan University in 2000. He was an early researcher of the QQ messaging software and founded Tencent Video, now one of the largest video-streaming platforms in China.Li credits his time at Tencent for building his business acumen and said he was inspired by the company’s founders, Pony Ma and Zhang Zhidong, according to the CapitalWatch interview. Tencent remains Futu’s largest institutional backer, and several of its employees were key in helping the online broker grow over the past decade.Still, Li hopes he’ll ultimately be defined by his legacy at Futu.“For a long time, people wondered why I left Tencent at its peak of growth,” Li said in the interview. “Now that Futu has made it, the weight of importance has changed.”(Updates share move since IPO in 10th paragraph)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
What happened Shares of Sohu.com (NASDAQ: SOHU) were climbing today for the second day in a row after Chinese tech giant Tencent (OTC: TCEHY) made an offer to buy its Sogou (NYSE: SOGO) search engine.
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(Bloomberg) -- A Japanese ruling Liberal Democratic Party group is set to probe the risks associated with Chinese-developed apps amid concerns about data security among several leading democracies, its leader said Tuesday.Akira Amari, the group’s top official and the LDP’s tax panel chief, told reporters the time had come to consider what effect software was having on national security, adding that the U.S. was urging other countries to look at the issue from the same perspective. Rather than a “top down” decree on apps such as TikTok, Amari said he wanted users to be aware of the risks entailed.The group will then urge the government to introduce restrictions based on its analysis, the Yomiuri newspaper said. The move comes as the U.S. threatens a crackdown on apps from China, amid a broader standoff between the world’s two largest economies.Combative TikTok Founder Races to Save App Before Trump Ban (2)Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Wang Wenbin sidestepped a question on the proposal at a regular news briefing Tuesday. “The mutually beneficial cooperation between China and other countries is win-win,” Wang said, adding that China didn’t “want to see any artificial damage to such patterns of cooperation.” Apart from social media applications like ByteDance Ltd.’s TikTok, the LDP group would also seek restrictions on Chinese-developed banking systems that use artificial intelligence for tasks like evaluating loan applications, national broadcaster NHK reported separately. India last month took sweeping action to ban TikTok and dozens of other Chinese apps, after a deadly clash between its military and People’s Liberation Army troops on their disputed northern border.Navarro Says More U.S. Action on TikTok, WeChat to Be ExpectedU.S. President Donald Trump has also said he was considering a ban on TikTok, and a decision was likely to come before elections in November. White House adviser Peter Navarro has said he expected “strong action” against both TikTok and Tencent Holdings Ltd.’s WeChat for engaging in “information warfare” against the U.S.In Japan, other LDP members earlier this month called for the official cancellation of a state visit by President Xi Jinping in protest against China’s clampdown on Hong Kong. The visit had already been postponed from early April as both countries battled the coronavirus pandemic.Japan Ruling LDP Softens Demand on Xi Visit CancellationPrime Minister Shinzo Abe has sought to mend often fraught ties with China, his country’s biggest trading partner, while maintaining Japan’s alliance with the U.S.(Updates with Amari’s comments from second paragraph.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Tencent Holdings made a preliminary, non-binding offer late Monday to take search engine Sogou private, the latest move to privatise a Chinese tech company as tensions worsen between Washington and Beijing.Sogou said Tencent, its biggest shareholder, offered to pay US$9 a share for the shares of the search engine operator it does not already own, representing a 57 per cent premium to its closing price on Friday. The company's American depositary shares closed up 48 per cent at US$8.51 on Monday, valuing it at US$3.3 billion.The Beijing-headquartered company said a special committee of its independent directors would consider the proposal, but it had not "made any decisions" regarding the offer."There can be no assurance that Tencent will make any definitive offer to Sogou, that any definitive agreement relating to the proposal letter will be entered into between Sogou and Tencent, or that the proposed transaction or any other similar transaction will be approved or consummated," Sogou said in a statement.Sogou, which has nearly 2,800 employees, was founded in 2005 and its controlling shareholder is Sohu, the Chinese video, internet search and online gaming group was founded by Charles Zhang.The company listed in the US in 2017 and Tencent has been its biggest shareholder since 2013. It also serves as the default search engine for a range of Tencent products, as well as WeChat, as part of an ongoing collaboration agreement.Tencent beneficially owns 39.2 per cent of Sogou's outstanding shares and controls 52.3 per cent of its voting power, according to its proposal letter.The Shenzhen-based tech giant said it had entered into an agreement with Mr. Zhang, Sogou's chairman and chief executive, to vote in favour of the transaction. Mr. Zhang owns 6.4 per cent of the company's outstanding shares.Sohu said in a statement late Monday that its board had not reviewed or evaluated the offer in detail or made "any determination as to how to respond to the proposal or as to whether or not the proposed acquisition of Sogou would be in the best interests of Sohu."Tencent said it intends to make the purchase with cash on hand and has engaged Goldman Sachs as an adviser on the transaction."We believe that the transaction will provide superior value to the company's shareholders," Martin Lau, Tencent's president, said in the letter. "In considering this proposal, you should be aware that we are interested only in pursuing the transaction and we do not intend to sell our stake in the company to any third party."Jefferies analyst Thomas Chong said the proposal was a "surprise to the street" as analysts had not been anticipated that Tencent would privatise the search engine even though there have been a number of privatisation moves this year."We expect there will be more synergies between the two companies in search and smart devices in the future upon completion," Chong said in a research note on Monday.Since 2016, several large Chinese technology companies have delisted from American bourses, only to re-emerge with mainland listings.Chinese internet security firm Qihoo 360 Technology left the New York Stock Exchange in 2016 and moved to Shanghai with a back-door listing in 2018. Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation (SMIC), China's biggest chip maker, surged in its debut in Shanghai this month after delisting from the US last year.The offer comes as relations between Washington and Beijing are increasingly strained following an extended trade war between the world's two biggest economies and the passage of a controversial national security law for Hong Kong.In May, the US Senate passed legislation that could force Chinese companies to delist from American bourses if they do not submit their audits for review by a US oversight board. Last week, the Trump administration ordered China to close its consulate in Houston, accusing the consulate of being an "epicentre" of economic espionage and theft."As recent frictions between the US and China continue to grow, with a number of American politicians calling for the delisting of Chinese firms trading on US bourses, Hong Kong-listed Tencent may been keen to mitigate risk by simply taking Sogou private," said Mark Natkin, managing director of Marbridge Consulting, a Beijing market research and consulting firm focused on technology firms.Natikin said the the timing also is good as Sogou's share price, once as high as almost US$14 a share - had been trading at a historical low of less than US$3 in late May.The heightened tensions have caused a number of Chinese companies to consider secondary listings closer to home in Hong Kong or to pursue so-called take-private deals.New economy companies JD.com and NetEase raised more than US$6 billion combined with secondary listings in Hong Kong in June, following a US$12.9 billion secondary listing last year by Alibaba Group Holding, the parent company of the South China Morning Post.58.com, a Chinese online classified advertisement site, agreed in June to be taken private by a consortium of investors led by Warburg Pincus and General Atlantic. The deal valued the company at US$8.7 billion.This month, Sina Corporation, the operator of social media platform Weibo, said a company controlled by its chairman offered to take it private in a deal that would value it at US$2.7 billion. Sina had been listed in the US since 2000.In January, a unit of Sohu agreed to take private US-listed Chinese online gaming company Changyou.com.This article originally appeared in the South China Morning Post (SCMP), the most authoritative voice reporting on China and Asia for more than a century. For more SCMP stories, please explore the SCMP app or visit the SCMP's Facebook and Twitter pages. Copyright © 2020 South China Morning Post Publishers Ltd. All rights reserved. Copyright (c) 2020. South China Morning Post Publishers Ltd. All rights reserved.
(Bloomberg) -- South Africa’s main stock index erases gains of as 0.3%, to decline 0.6% by 9:54 a.m. in Johannesburg, with gold shares retreating the most in more than a month as the rally in bullion cools. Luxury retailer and market heavyweight Richemont weighs on the benchmark index after earnings from French peer LVMH disappoint analysts.Gold index slides as much as 5.5%, most June 15Globally, investors are betting setbacks in the fight against the coronavirus will lead Fed Chairman Jerome Powell to signal Wednesday that rates will stay near zero for longer. Health officials are tackling rising cases in countries ranging from China to Spain and Germany, underscoring the difficulty of curbing the pandemic.NOTE: Futures, Stocks Pare Gains; Gold Rally Cools: Markets WrapSouth Africa secured a $4.3 billion in emergency loan from the International Monetary Fund, the largest emergency disbursement for any country yet. The funds will go toward supporting government efforts addressing the challenging health situation and severe economic impact of the Covid-19 shock, the Washington-based lender said Monday.Read more about the IMF loan hereLuxury retailer Richemont, falls for the third day, down 1.3%, providing biggest drag on the index, after French peer LVMH missed analysts’ profit esimates NOTE: LVMH Profit Hit by Store Closures, Travel RestrictionsThe index of bank stocks falls 1.1% as rand weakensFirstRand Ltd. -1%, Standard Bank Ltd. -0.7%, Capitec Bank Holdings Ltd. -0.3%, Absa Group Ltd. -1.3%, Investec Plc -1.4%Cooling bullion prices drag gold producers lower, pulling the gauge of mining firms down 0.4%.Sub-Index for gold producers halts a four-day rally, as bullion frenzy pauses, with investors looking to lock in profitsGold Fields Ltd. -3.5%, AngloGold Ashanti Ltd. -2.2%, Harmony Gold Mining Co. -4.2%, DRDGold Ltd. -1.6%Iron-ore producers gain after a recovery in the steelmaking raw materialAnglo American Plc +0.6%, BHP Group Plc +0.3%, African Rainbow Minerals Ltd. +0.2%NOTE: Iron Ore Rebounds as China Economy, Rio Earnings EyedKumba Iron Ore Ltd. +0.6% as company say the rally in iron ore prices countered the impact from the coronavirus, which disrupted mining production and curbed earnings.NOTE: Top African Iron Ore Miner Helped by Price Surge as Output DropsIndex heavyweight Naspers Ltd., with a 19% weighting, rises for the second day, up 1% to provide biggest boost to the market, as partly owned Tencent Holdings Ltd. advances in Hong Kong.Naspers subsidiary, Prosus NV, which holds the company’s 31% stake in Tencent, gains 0.7% as company sells two benchmark euro bonds, following a $1b U.S. deal on Monday.NOTE: Tencent Investor Prosus Offers Debut Euro Bonds Amid M&A HuntForeigners were net sellers of South African stocks for a fourth day Monday, disposing of 1.29b rand worth of shares, according to index operator JSE Ltd.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
Tencent Holdings Limited's (OTC: TCEHY) offer to purchase Sogou Inc (NYSE: SOGO), and take it private, sent the Chinese search engine firm, and parent company Sohu.com Ltd's (NASDAQ: SOHU), shares soaring on Monday. What Happened The Shenzhen-based technology giant is proposing to pay $9 per American depositary share of Sogou in cash, a premium of 56.5% on July 24's closing price of $5.75.The Chinese multimedia conglomerate already owns 39.2% of Sogou's total issued and outstanding shares and has 52.3% of total voting power in the firm. The search engine's parent Sohu hasn't yet decided on its response to the offer, it said in a statement disclosing the offer. The Sogou search engine is already integrated into Tencent's popular messaging platform WeChat.Why It Matters The Tencent offer comes at a time for Sogou when Chinese companies listed in the United States are scrambling for alternatives, as relations between the two countries continue to deteriorate. The U.S. Senate approved a bill in May that could lead to the delisting of a significant number of Chinese companies on the country's exchange desks. Last month JD.Com Inc (NASDAQ: JD) carried out a secondary listing in Hong Kong that raised about $3.88 billion. Alibaba Group Holding Limited (NYSE: BABA) also debuted in Hong Kong last year and raised $11 billion in its IPO.Ant Financial Services Group, an Alibaba subsidiary, is planning simultaneous listings in Hong Kong and Shanghai. Price Action Sogou shares closed 48% higher at $8.51 on Monday after the offer was made, taking the company's valuation to $3.31 billion. The shares were mostly unchanged in the after-hours session.Sohu shares added nearly 40% at $15.55 in the regular session, and were up another 2.4% at $15.92 in the after-hours session.Photo by WhisperToMe on Wikimedia CommonsSee more from Benzinga * Intel Shakeup Sees Chief Engineer Depart After Next-Gen Chips Delayed * Tesla On A 'Hiring Spree' In China As It Readies For Model Y Production: Report * Facebook Asks Court To Intervene In EU Antitrust Probe Over Violation Of Employee Privacy: FT(C) 2020 Benzinga.com. Benzinga does not provide investment advice. All rights reserved.
(Bloomberg) -- Tencent Holdings Ltd. has offered to buy out and take private search engine Sogou Inc. in a $2.1 billion deal, adding to a slew of Chinese technology giants seeking to delist from U.S. bourses.Shares of the social media heavyweight climbed as much as 4.7% Tuesday, buoyed by speculation it will more closely integrate Sogou’s AI technology with its own services and devices to gain an edge on rivals like TikTok-owner ByteDance Ltd.Tencent has in past years come under pressure from ByteDance and other up-and-coming rivals in the emergent short-video arena. Beijing-based Sogou -- whose name translates as “search dog” -- has long been the default in a slew of Tencent products including its marquee social app WeChat. It’s also been making a push into artificial intelligence.A takeover of Sogou also raises the prospect of a lucrative listing in Hong Kong or Shanghai in the future, on the heels of well-received debuts by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and JD.com Inc. It’s become an increasingly attractive route for tech giants such as Jack Ma’s Ant Group, which is speeding toward what could be the city’s biggest float in years. Sogou Chief Executive Officer Wang Xiaochuan in 2018 declared his ambition to list on mainland bourses when regulations permit.Chinese internet companies are exploring listings closer to home after a proposed U.S. bill threatened to force them to delist from New York by imposing stricter disclosure requirements -- a prospect that looks increasingly plausible as the Trump administration amps up action against Beijing on multiple fronts. Online gaming company Changyou.com Ltd. got taken private this year by Sohu.com Ltd., and 58.com Inc. is being bought out by a private equity consortium for $8.7 billion.The “market has been anticipating more companies to pursue secondary listing in Hong Kong,” Jefferies analysts led by Thomas Chong wrote. “We consider there will be more synergies between Sogou and Tencent in search and smart devices in the future.”What Blomberg Intelligence SaysTencent’s return to the search engine business may pose a challenge to China leader Baidu, and help fend off competition from potential market entrants ByteDance and Alibaba. Tencent sold search engine Soso to Sogou in 2013. Its bid to buy the 61% of Sogou it doesn’t yet own at $9 per ADS will cost more than $2 billion.\- Vey-Sern Ling and Tiffany Tam, analystsClick here for the research.Tencent is offering $9 in cash for each American depositary share it doesn’t already hold in Sogou, backed by fellow internet giant Sohu. That’s a 57% premium to the target company’s Friday close. Sogou said in a statement it was considering the takeover offer, though Tencent already owns about 39.2% of Sogou but controls a majority of voting power.Sogou, founded in 2005 and merged with Tencent’s Soso search business in 2013, has counted on its partnership with the larger company to help it catch search leader Baidu Inc. Its 2017 IPO also helped bankroll a longer-term AI effort -- about three quarters of its employees are now involved in research and development, according to its website.Sohu’s shares gained 40% in New York, their most in a decade, while Sogou leapt a record 48% to close the gap with the offer price.(Updates with Tencent share action from the second paragraph)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2020 Bloomberg L.P.
It's been seven years since Tencent picked up a 36.5% stake in Sogou to fend off rival Baidu in the online search market. The social and gaming giant is now offering to buy out and take private its longtime ally. NYSE-listed Sogou said this week it has received a preliminary non-binding proposal from Tencent to acquire its remaining shares for $9 each American depositary share (ADS) it doesn't already own.
Geopolitical squabbles between America and China notwithstanding, Monday is looking like a great day to own Chinese stocks. In early trading this morning, shares of web portal Sohu.com (NASDAQ: SOHU) and its Sogou (NYSE: SOGO) search engine are surging 38.6% and 46.1%, respectively. Across the strait in Taiwan, chip manufacturing giant Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (NYSE: TSM) is up a strong 9.4% as of 10 a.m. EDT.