Payments firm PingPong eyes $1 billion IPO
PingPong, a Chinese startup that helps e-commerce merchants make cross-border payments, is considering an initial public offering (IPO) to raise up to $1 billion.
Sources told Bloomberg News on Thursday (January 27) that the company was working with advisers on an IPO that could hit Hong Kong markets this year. The company had considered listing in mainland China.
PingPong will also attempt to raise around $300 million in a pre-IPO funding round, the sources say, noting that the company is valued at $5 billion.
In 2020, the company achieved “unicorn” status, which means that its value exceeded $1 billion. It had hit $1.5 billion by the end of that year, around the same time PingPong received approval from Luxembourg regulators to do business as an electronic money institution (EMI).
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Founded in 2015, the company collects payments for Chinese companies selling on platforms such as Amazon and Shopify. More than one million merchants use PingPong for cross-border, procurement and value-added tax payments, the company says on its website.
Sellers can use PingPong to manage multiple currencies through a secure platform. Based in Hangzhou, the company has more than 600 employees in the United States, Europe and Asia.
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PYMNTS spoke with PingPong Managing Director Kenny Tsang about the shift to digital commerce at the start of the pandemic in 2020.
He told PYMNTS’ Karen Webster that the digital shift was accelerating and consumer shopping habits were unlikely to return to pre-pandemic norms in the future. Tsang argued that online sales no longer depend as much on younger shoppers who are more comfortable with technology.
He noted that “the older generation that couldn’t [use technology] or is unwilling to shop in stores is also embracing digital” – one of the main reasons e-commerce adoption has seen the acceleration it did at the start of the COVID pandemic -19.