Alibaba in largest IPO on New York Stock Exchange in US history

Gurjit Degun
22 September 2014

E-commerce company Alibaba Group has begun trading on the New York Stock Exchange with the largest initial public offering (IPO) in US history.

The business, which was set up as an online marketplace featuring Chinese suppliers, said shares in the IPO were initially priced at $68 (£41.62). They are currently trading at $90.70 (£55.51) under the ticker symbol BABA.

“The offering of 320.1 million shares raised $21.77 billion (£13.3 billion), eclipsing the previous US record set in 2008 when Visa raised nearly $17.9 billion (£11 billion),” the company said. It also explained underwriters have a 30-day option to buy up to around 48 million more shares. This could mean the size of the offering could be as much as $25 billion (£15.3 billion).

“Alibaba is a global leader in online and mobile commerce and a true innovator,” said NYSE group president Thomas Farley. “We congratulate the entire team at Alibaba on its IPO and look forward to serving the company and its shareholders.”

Warwick Business School professor Qing Wang said: “The strong performance and fast rise of the Chinese technology companies in the world may shock some outsiders. It is certainly helped by an enormous and fast growing domestic market, but there is more: the competition in that domestic market among the Chinese companies, as well as with multinational corporations that have entered it, is extremely fierce and successful private companies like Alibaba have to be highly entrepreneurial and market-oriented.”

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