NEW YORK — Agricultural Bank of China’s initial public offering has raised more than $19 billion in what could turn out to be the largest IPO ever.
AgBank, the last of China’s big four state-owned banks to go public, is selling 25.41 billion shares in Hong Kong and 22.24 billion shares in Shanghai.
Based on yesterday’s pricing, the rural lender will have raised about $19.23 billion, according to a person familiar with the deal.
The person requested anonymity because details about the IPO had not been released yesterday.
If underwriters buy up about $2.89 billion more shares to sell to investors, the dual-listing deal could raise $22.12 billion — the most funds ever for an IPO.
Industrial and Commercial Bank of China raised $21.9 billion in its October 2006 IPO.
The original forecasts had put AgBank’s proceeds at a whopping $30 billion.
But investors appeared unprepared to pay that much for shares in a bank whose profitability is viewed as weaker than at its urban-focused competitors.
Mainland Chinese shares have slumped in recent weeks on worries that the huge IPO may overwhelm demand, pulling prices lower.
The global IPO market also has suffered this summer as stock markets tumbled around the world and uncertainty over the economic recovery increased.
In Hong Kong, the shares priced for 41 cents each, the midpoint of the expected range, the person said.
In Shanghai, shares priced for 40 cents, the top of the expected range, the person added.
Proceeds would total $10.44 billion in Hong Kong and $8.79 billion in Shanghai.
The bank said in its Hong Kong prospectus that major foreign investors in the Hong Kong offering include:
■ Qatar Investment Authority, $2.8 billion.
■ Kuwait Investment Authority, $800 million.
■ Britain’s Standard Chartered Bank, $500 million.
■ The Dutch bank Radobank Nederland, $250 million.
■ Australia’s Seven Group Holdings Ltd., $250 million.
■ Singapore’s Temasek Holdings, $200 million.