HONG KONG Chinese internet insurer Zhong An Online Property and Casualty Insurance has picked three banks as sponsors of a planned initial public offering in Hong Kong worth about $2 billion, IFR reported on Wednesday, citing people familiar with the deal.
Zhong An, backed by Chinese internet companies Tencent Holdings Ltd (0700.HK) and Ant Financial, selected Credit Suisse, JPMorgan and UBS to lead the offering, expected to take place in 2017, added IFR, a Thomson Reuters publication.
Zhong An did not immediately reply to a Reuters request for comment during a holiday week in mainland China. Credit Suisse and UBS declined to comment and JPMorgan did not return a request for comment.
Zhong An, China's first Internet-only insurer, last year raised 5.78 billion yuan ($867 million) from a group of investors that included Morgan Stanley (MS.N), domestic investment bank China International Capital Corp Ltd (3908.HK) and private equity firms CDH Investments and SAIF Partners. The fundraising valued Zhong An at $8 billion.
The Zhong An listing would come as China's biggest peer-to-peer lending platform, Lufax, is also looking to go public in a $5 billion deal. Lufax, which is backed by Ping An Insurance Co of China Ltd (2318.HK) (601318.SS), is in talks with four investment banks including Citigroup and Morgan Stanley to lead its listing.
Zhong An was founded in 2013 by Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (BABA.N) Executive Chairman Jack Ma, Tencent's Chairman Pony Ma and Ping An's Chairman Ma Mingzhe.
(Reporting by Fiona Lau; Writing by Elzio Barreto; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman and Christopher Cushing)