Chinese President Xi Jinping personally made the decision to stop the IPO of financial services company Ant Group after the majority shareholder, Jack Ma, infuriated government leaders for their criticism of regulators in a speech he delivered last October, according to Chinese officials have told 'The Wall Street Journal'.
The decision, the newspaper says, was the culmination of years of Tense relations between China's most famous businessman and a government uneasy about his influence and the rapid growth of the digital payment giants it controls.
The Ant Group IPO in Hong Kong and Shanghai It was scheduled for November 5. The Shanghai Stock Exchange reported on Tuesday, November 3, that it had made the decision to suspend the IPO for not meeting the requirements, after Jack Ma himself attended a meeting with the People's Bank of China and other supervisory authorities on Monday, November 2.
The Ant Group IPO it would have been the biggest in history. The company had planned to raise about 133,656 million Hong Kong dollars (14,596 million euros) and 114,944 million yuan (14,490 million euros). In addition, in both transactions, Ant Group had reserved the option of placing up to 250.6 million additional securities in the event of oversubscription of the offer ('green shoe'), which would have raised the amount of the operation by another 4,360 million euros.
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