Ant Financial delays IPO plans again

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Ant Financial IPO plans pushed back again – Financial Times

What happened: Ant Financial has decided to push back its IPO plans again due to financial hurdles and pressure from government’s recent crackdown on non-traditional financial institutions. The original expectations were that the company would file for an IPO sometime in this year, but people familiar with the matter were quoted as saying that a listing is unlikely before the end of 2019.

Why it’s important: The Alibaba affiliate was valued at $150 billion in its latest fundraising in June, which many investors thought paved the way for the highly-anticipated IPO. However, the company’s first-quarter earnings revealed that it has been reporting losses lately amid rivalry with the payment services of Tencent. Beijing has also been putting pressure on non-traditional financial institutions. Ant Financial, a privately-owned fintech company, has especially been under government’s close scrutiny.