KE Holdings Inc., also known as Beike Zhaofang, a China online house listing and transaction service, is seeking to raise up to $2 billion in the U.S. through an initial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange.
The Tencent Holdings Ltd. and SoftBank Group Corp.-backed company submitted a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission late last week, according to sources with knowledge of the deal.
Beike Zhaofang plans to sell up to 106 million American depositary shares, or ADRs, in the IPO. The company, owned by home lender and renovation company and real estate broker Beijing Homelink Real Estate Brokerage Co. Ltd., will price its American shares in a range between $17 and $19 each. Each of the company's ADRs is equal to three of its Class A ordinary shares, according to its filing.
If it sells all its shares at the higher end of the range Beike Zhaofang could raise as much as $2.01 billion. This would make it the largest share sale by a China company since online video outfit iQIYI raised $2.4 billion in a March 2018 IPO.
Beike Zhaofang is expected to announce its official pricing Wednesday. The company plans to list on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker BEKE. Morgan Stanley, Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan Chase, and China Renaissance Holdings will serve as bookrunners.
Beijing Homelink, one of China's largest real estate companies, launched Beike Zhaofang in 2018. Beike Zhaofang, which means "shells" in Chinese, became the real estate company's main online platform for its properties. It expanded to include other property listings.
Since then it has raised more than $2 billion in several funding rounds. Japan conglomerate SoftBank invested close to $1.3 billion in the company while China technology company Tencent injected $800 million last year.
Experts have put the company's market valuation at around $10 billion. But based on its announced price range and its outstanding Class A and Class B shares Beike Zhaofang could have a market valuation of around $21 billion after the IPO. This would be significantly higher than its previously announced market valuation of about $14 billion.