July 4, 2017 / 2:08 AM / 19 days ago

Tencent's online publisher files for Hong Kong IPO seen worth $800 mln

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HONG KONG, July 4 (Reuters) - China Literature Ltd, a Tencent Holdings Ltd unit and the country's largest online publishing and e-book company, has filed for a Hong Kong initial public offering that is expected to raise as much as $800 million.

The company hired Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Credit Suisse and Morgan Stanley as sponsors of the IPO, and is looking to raise funds for potential acquisitions and expand its mobile reading business, it said in a filing late on Monday.

China Literature has a business akin to Amazon.com Inc's Kindle Store, operating a platform with 8.4 million literary works from 5.3 million writers, it said.

Thomson Reuters publication IFR has previously reported that the deal could raise as much as $800 million.

Tencent started its online reading business in 2004 and it grew substantially after the acquisition of Cloudary Corp in 2014 for $729.6 million.

Cloudary had filed to go public on the New York Stock Exchange in 2011 and 2012, before withdrawing the listing application in 2013 "due to market conditions," the filing showed. ($1 = 6.7980 Chinese yuan) (Reporting by Elzio Barreto; Editing by Edwina Gibbs)

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