China’s Sina Weibo prepares for $500 million U.S. IPO

February 24, 2014

10:21 am

On the heels of Facebook’s acquisition of WhatsApp, China’s Sina Corp. has selected banks for an initial public offering of Weibo – a popular microblogging service in China, much in the way of Twitter – that could potentially raise about $500 million, according to a report from the Financial Times earlier today.

According to two unnamed sources familiar with the deal, Sina has hired Credit Suisse AG and the Goldman Sachs Group Inc. to manage the U.S. listing. The $500 million is expected to be complete in time for a second-quarter Weibo IPO.

This is huge news, considering that Weibo is one of China’s most popular microblogging social platforms, with approximately 60 million daily active users. The platform is reckoned to be worth at least $3.3 billion (based on an 18% stake in Weibo paid last year by Alibaba, China’s dominant ecommerce platform). However, according to a report by Quartz, the platform could be worth upwards of $6 billion (as predicted by analysts from Piper Jaffray).

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Ronald Barba was the previous managing editor of Tech.Co. His primary story interests include industry trends, consumer-facing apps/products, the startup lifestyle, business ethics, diversity in tech, and what-is-this-bullsh*t things. Aside from writing about startups and entrepreneurship, Ronald is interested in 'Doctor Who', Murakami, 'The Mindy Project', and fried chicken. He is currently based in New York because he mistakenly studied philosophy in college and is now a "writer". Tweet @RonaldPBarba.

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