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Developers make a beeline for public floats in Hong Kong
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A bunch of Chinese real estate developers led by Glorious Property are making a beeline to list on the Hong Kong bourse hoping to cash in on the capital and property market rebounds.

First off the mark has been Glorious Property which launched an initial public offering on Sept 14 and is set to be followed by Beijing-based Longfor Group, Guangzhou-based Evergrande Real Estate, Shenzhen-based Excellence Group, Fantasia Real Estate and Xiamen-based Powerlong, according to Caijing online.

"The capital market is rebounding at present, and the global and domestic economies are showing signs of recovery," said Qin Lihong, general manager for branding, Longfor Group.

"Both of these factors are good triggers for companies planning to float IPOs," he said.

"Many property firms had put on hold their fund raising plans after the IPO suspension last year. But with signs of recovery emerging they are back on track with the floats," said Lu Qilin, deputy director of Shanghai Youwei Property Research Center.

Lu said most of the companies are raising funds to increase their land reserves.

An estimated $15 billion worth of public floats are coming up in Hong Kong over the next few months, with several domestic property groups looking to tap the market rebound, according to Reuters. Glorious plans to raise over $1.5 billion from its IPO, by selling 2.25 billion shares at HK$4 to HK$5.3 each. Pricing is planned for Sept 24 and trading will begin on Oct 2.

Glorious' size of fund raising is the second largest this year on the Hong Kong market, only behind China Metallurgical Group Corporation.

Four investors have already been guaranteed $130 million worth of shares, including Shanghai Industrial Holding Ltd, Sino-Ocean Land Holdings Ltd, China Southern Fund Management Co and a private company under Nam Fung Group.

Sources also said China Ping An Insurance Group and China Life Insurance Group also joined the purchase of the offering. Chinese Estates Group Chairman Joseph Lau and Dickson Concepts Group Chairman Dickson Poon bought shares as individual investors.

The company, which has a land reserve of 13.6 million sq m in cities like Shanghai, Beijing and Tianjin, is already the biggest developer in Shanghai.

Its projects include Sunshine Holiday in Tianjin and Shanghai Bay, situated along the Huangpu River.

UBS AG, JP Morgan and Deutsche Bank are handling the offering.

Fellow developer Evergrande also plans to raise an estimated $1.5 billion, with other Chinese real estate companies also in the IPO pipeline.

Longfor has handed in the application to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange and will settle the IPO price in November.

The company plans to raise $1 billion to $1.2 billion in its IPO, similar with its pervious float plan last October but delayed due to the sluggish market.

Powerlong also seeks to raise about $500 million later this month, while Macquarie Group, Goldman Sachs Group Inc and Industrial & Commercial Bank of China have been chosen as underwriters, according to the Wall Street Journal.

(China Daily September 18, 2009)

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