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Chinese battery maker REPT Battero Energy soars on Hong Kong debut

CHINESE battery maker REPT Battero Energy, a unit of the world’s top nickel producer Tsingshan Holding Group, rose in its first day of trade in Hong Kong on Monday (Dec 18) after an initial public offering (IPO) that priced near the bottom of the marketed range.

Shares gained 2.6 per cent to close at HK$18.78. The company raised about HK$2.1 billion (S$359 million) after selling 116 million shares at HK$18.30 each. They were offered at HK$18.2 to HK$20.6 apiece in Hong Kong’s fourth-largest IPO this year.

REPT Battero is coming to market after a tepid year for new share sales in Hong Kong, where total proceeds raised slumped 58 per cent on the yearly comparison amid rising concerns about China’s economic growth. EV battery maker CALB, which listed in the city in Oct 2022 after raising US$1.3 billion, is down more than 50 per cent since the first day of trade.

Tsingshan Holding is the world’s top nickel producer and has transformed the industry, with a bet on low-grade nickel ore in Indonesia that has turned the country into a major player in the stainless steel and battery-ingredient industries. The company was at the centre of a 2022 nickel short squeeze on the London Metal Exchange, with Tsingshan’s forced unwinding of huge positions triggering a price spike.

Fifteen companies that listed in Hong Kong after raising between US$100 million and US$500 million this year, excluding REPT Battero, rose by an average 1.9 per cent in their debut, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Only 18 companies raised at least that amount through IPOs in the Asian hub this year, versus 23 over the same period in 2022.

REPT Battero will use 80 per cent of the proceeds to expand its production capacity, particularly the construction of facilities in Wenzhou, Foshan and Chongqing. Morgan Stanley and Citic Securities are joint sponsors in the offering.


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