By Julie Zhu
HONG KONG (Reuters) – China‘s Didi Global plans to hire Goldman Sachs for its planned Hong Kong listing and U.S. delisting, said three sources with knowledge of the matter, as it moves to withdraw from the New York exchange after just five months.
Didi, which made its debut in New York on June 30 after raising $4.4 billion via an initial public offering (IPO), said last week that it plans to delist from the U.S. bourse and pursue a Hong Kong listing.
The company is under pressure from Beijing to quit the New York Stock Exchange after running foul of Chinese authorities by pushing ahead with its IPO despite being asked to put it on hold while a review of its data practices was conducted.
Two sources said Didi was looking to appoint Goldman to work on the Hong Kong listing before embarking on the New York delisting. A separate source said Didi was also in talks with other investment banks including some Chinese banks.
Given the short time since its New York debut, Didi will have to apply for a dual-primary listing in Hong Kong, instead of a secondary one which requires at least two financial years of good regulatory compliance on another qualifying exchange.
The company, sometimes dubbed the Uber of China, has also asked the Wall Street investment bank to come up with proposals on how a Hong Kong listing and New York delisting would work, said two of the sources.
Didi did not respond to a Reuters request for comment. Goldman declined to comment. The sources were not authorised to talk to the media and therefore declined to be identified.
Goldman was one of the main underwriters of Didi’s New York IPO, along with Morgan Stanley and JPMorgan.
Reuters reported last week, citing a source with knowledge of the matter, that Didi aims to complete the Hong Kong listing as soon as in the next three months, and delist from New York by June 2022.
Didi’s shares closed at $6.66 on Thursday, more than 50% below their launch price.
(Reporting by Julie Zhu; Editing by Sumeet Chatterjee, Kirsten Donovan)