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December 21, 2021

Hong Kong-based insurer FWD Group sheds US IPO plans

Hong Kong-based insurance company FWD Group has abandoned its initial public offering (IPO) plans in the US.

According to a Bloomberg report, the company decided against proceeding with the New York listing amid increasing scrutiny on foreign listings by Chinese regulators.

In a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), FWD Group said that it has requested commission approval for the withdrawal of its registration statement.

The insurer filed the registration statement in September related to the proposed IPO of American depositary shares (ADSs) to represent Class A ordinary shares of FWD Group.

“The Company is considering other alternatives and has determined not to proceed at this time with the offering and sale of the securities proposed to be covered by the Registration Statement.

“The Registration Statement has not been declared effective by the commission and the Company confirms that no securities have been sold pursuant to the Registration Statement.

“Therefore, withdrawal of the Registration Statement is consistent with the public interest and the protection of investors, as contemplated by paragraph (a) of Rule 477,” the statement said.

Earlier this month, FWD signed agreement to raise $1.42bn from several investors through private placements.

With the fundraising, the company was valued at around $9bn.

The US listing would have valued the insurer at around $13bn, Bloomberg added.

FWD Group is backed by billionaire Richard Li. The company offers life and medical insurance, general insurance and employee benefits among other services.

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