58.com files for US IPOOct 1, 2013China's 58.com Inc, a local classified-advertisement website, filed for an IPO of up to USD150m in American depositary shares as the site looks to fund further growth. 58.com, which became only the second mainland China-based company to complete a US IPO this year, said it would use the proceeds for general corporate purposes, these may include product development, technology investment and marketing, among others.
Economists downgrade forecast on China's economic growthAug 22, 2014Starting out this year with optimism, economists have rethought their forecast for China's massive economy, the world's second biggest. After the release of the country's preliminary manufacturing data on 21 August, which sharply dropped unexpectedly, analysts are now saying that they are more inclined to believe that China’s economy will struggle for the remainder of the year -- putting more pressure on Beijing to increase government spending or liberalize the money market further in order to encourage growth. Julian Evans-Pritchard of Capital Economics told the Wall Street Journal that June was probably the best month for China's economy and it will be downhill from here on.
Smaller smartphone firms join Huawei, Lenovo in global marketAug 22, 2014
While large companies such as Huawei Technologies and Lenovo Group are leading the way in overseas expansion, and threatening market leaders Apple Inc of the US and South Korea's Samsung Electronics, smaller smartphone players from China like Coolpad are also spending millions to promote their products in the United States, Europe and Southeast Asia. BNP Paribas analyst Peter Yu told the Wall Street Journal that the smartphone market in China has reached a saturation point and manufacturers are naturally expanding outside the country. From 2011 to 2013, China's smartphone shipments almost quadrupled.
South Korean, NDRC discuss Qualcomm issueAug 22, 2014
National Development and Reform Commission officials and their South Korean counterparts have held a meeting to discuss how the Koreans dealt with US-based chipmaker Qualcomm Inc's anti-trust violations. The Korea Fair Trade Commission fined Qualcomm over USD200m five years ago. Qualcomm is one of about 30 foreign-based companies being investigated in China for alleged violations of the country's anti-monopoly regulations. In 2013, Qualcomm's total revenue was around USD25bn, fifty per cent of it earned in China.
Lexus lowers prices for spare parts by 26%Aug 22, 2014
Toyota's luxury brand, Lexus, announced on 21 August that it would decrease prices of its spare parts by an average of 26% starting September in China, as the government widens its anti-monopoly drive. Lexus' announcement came after the National Development and Reform Commission fined 12 Japanese auto-parts makers Rmb1.24bn (USD202m) for violations of anti-trust laws.
Cognac producers blame China anti-corruption drive for sales dipAug 22, 2014
Sales of cognac in the international market fell last year following years of impressive upswing, according to the Bureau National Interprofessionnel du Cognac from southwestern France. The BNIC put the blame squarely on the Chinese government's current war against corruption. The BNIC added that its cognac sales fell 6.7% by volume and 10.2% by value from July 2013 to July this year. The group also said that exports to the Far East: China, Japan, and Southeast Asia, declined by one fifth in 2013 in both volume and value.
Former NDRC finance chief placed under probeAug 22, 2014Former National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) director Zhang Dongsheng is being investigated on suspicion of bribery between the period of 2003 and 2006. China Daily reported that the Supreme People's Procurator announced that Zhang has been placed under coercive measures. The NDRC is responsible for approving the issuance of bonds of more than one year by non-listed companies and non-financial firms.
Sinopec plans USD1.5bn HK IPO for unitAug 22, 2014
Chinese oil and gas giant Sinopec is reportedly planning to list its oilfield services unit, Sinopec Oilfield Services Corp (SOSC), in Hong Kong with plans to raise USD1.5bn. SOSC provides engineering and technical services for firms engaged in oil and gas exploration and production. Details of the planned USD1.5bn SOSC IPO have not been officially disclosed but Reuters reported that Sinopec has already invited investment banks to pitch for the IPO mandates.
GM of China Asset Management Corp resignsAug 22, 2014Mainland China's second-biggest asset manager, China Asset Management Co (China AMC) has officially announced the resignation of its general manager, Teng Tianming. Teng, who was China AMC’s GM since 2012 will be replaced by Yang Minhui, the company's managing director, for an interim period until the company’s major shareholder picks a new general manager. Local media reported that CITIC Group, will name Tang Xiaodong as Teng's replacement. Tang is the deputy head of the international division at the China Securities Regulatory Commission. China AMC has AUM of around Rmb316.7bn (USD50.68bn) as of June 30.
China-Mongolia trade to hit USD10bn by 2020Aug 22, 2014China and Mongolia have agreed to nearly double their annual two-way trade to USD10bn by 2020. The agreement was reached during the meeting between President Xi Jinping and Mongolian President Elbegdorj Tsakhia. The two leaders also vowed to upgrade ties to a comprehensive strategic partnership. Xi became the first Chinese president in more than a decade to visit Mongolia.
Chinese tourists’ spending in South Korea to hit USD30bn by 2020Aug 22, 2014
South Korean news agency Yonhap reported that Chinese visitors could spend up to KRW30.5tr (USD29.8bn) in South Korea by 2020. The figure is nearly five times the amount that Chinese tourists spent in the country in 2013. According to the Korea Tourism Organization, the number of tourists from China is expected to increase by 19.8% on an annual basis to hit 14.9 million by 2020. More than 100 million Chinese are expected to travel around the world this year and several countries, including Korea, are gearing up their marketing to increase their share of China's outbound tourism market.
Hilton seeks to expand in ChinaAug 22, 2014Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc, the largest hotel operator in the world, revealed that it intends to build more hotels in Greater China. Hilton CEO and President Christopher Nassetta said his firm has plans to invest more in China and increase its presence there. Nassetta added that Hilton is confident of its long-term growth prospects in China, where it now has 48 hotels with 140 more in construction.
Amazon.com sets up shop in Shanghai FTZAug 21, 2014American online retail giant Amazon.com is setting up shop in Shanghai's Free Trade Zone in an attempt to beef up its presence in China’s huge e-commerce market currently dominated by Alibaba Group and JD.com. Reuters reported that Amazon aims to take advantage of less stringent trade regulations by setting up shop in the FTZ in order to sell a wider range of products in China. The company has not disclosed the official date of its FTZ launching.
China's mobile healthcare market to hit USD440m in 2014Aug 21, 2014
A report released by Zero2IPO Group said the value of the Chinese mobile healthcare market at the end of 2014 is estimated to reach Rmb2.7bn (USD439.5m), an increase of 20% on the figure for 2013. It is projected to reach Rmb12bn (USD1.95bn) in 2017. Mobile healthcare is the adoption of mobile technology to the medical sector. China has more than 100 companies engaged in mobile healthcare businesses or planning to develop them.
Tencent and Alimentation short-listed for Sinopec stake salesAug 21, 2014
Tencent Holdings Ltd and Canada's Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc are two of the short-listed possible buyers of a USD16bn minority stake in Sinopec Sales. Other Chinese firms also vying to buy the stake are ENN Energy Holdings Ltd, China Life Insurance Co, Fosun Group, Hopu Investment Management and Affinity Equity Partners. Sinopec, which used to be known as China Petroleum and Chemical Corp, is seeking to sell up to 30% of Sinopec Sales before the year is over as it starts to restructure government-owned assets.
GM and Chrysler to recall cars with defective airbags, softwareAug 21, 2014
US-based automobile companies General Motors and Chrysler have scheduled a recall of cars they sold in China because of airbag and software defects, respectively, according to the country's the General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine on 20 August. Chrysler's Grand Cherokees manufactured from 17 July 2013 to 1 May 2014 will be recalled starting 25 August numbering 11,013, while starting on 30 September GM will recall 700 Opel Agila-A cars made from 30 July 2002 to 29 January 2003.
China's first big private-investment firm createdAug 21, 2014
The first national-level private investment firm in China, China Minsheng Investment, was officially launched on 21 August, following the endorsement from the State Council in April. It has a registered capital of Rmb50bn (USD8.1bn) with funding from the top 59 private firms in China with total assets of almost Rmb1tr (USD160bn). These firms' businesses include power generation, machinery production, information technology, metallurgy, and new energy, among others.
China considers new car-industry regulationsAug 21, 2014
The Chinese government revealed possible plans to draft new rules for its automobile industry that hew closely to the country's anti-trust laws. Official Xu Xinyu of China's Price Supervision and Anti-Monopoly Bureau said that the rules for auto companies with regards to spare parts have become stricter and must be redefined. Xu added that many auto dealers have not allowed car parts to come in freely, unlike in the United States and Europe, due to the rigid restrictions on volume and prices.
China Power Investment Corp earmarks USD163m for solar power projectAug 21, 2014State-owned power firm China Power Investment Corp announced plans to build an 80-megawatt solar power plant in Jiangxi with an investment worth Rmb1bn (USD163m). The project in Gaoan City, Jiangxi is expected to generate not only up to 90 million kilowatt hours of electricity but Rmb10m of tax revenue for the provincial government, a statement on the website of Jiangxi said.
Insurance funds help upgrade China's economy – officialAug 21, 2014
China's insurance industry is playing a vital role in supporting the country's real economy, said Wang Zuji, vice chairman of the China Insurance Regulatory Commission (CIRC). Wang made the pronouncement after announcing that new regulations now provide insurers in China with a broader investment pipeline. As of June 2014, the amount of insurance funds used for the development of the real economy had reached Rmb3.6tr (USD585.17bn). Wang said the CIRC will draft policies that will allow more capital flows from the insurance sector to China's strategic emerging industries, although he did not give a timetable for the draft. The State Council also urged more insurance funds to be channeled into the real economy.
Hospitality investment in China tops Asia Pacific in 2013Aug 21, 2014Total hospitality investment volume in China reached USD2.636bn in 2013, 20.5% of the total investment volume in the Asia Pacific region, a recent report released by global real estate consultancy Cushman & Wakefield has shown. China is followed by Singapore with USD2.63bn and Japan with USD2.611bn. Overall, hospitality investments in the Asia Pacific region grew 30% to USD12.8bn in 2013 from a year ago, hitting a five-year record high. As of the first half of this year, hospitality investment volumes totaled USD5.2bn and full-year figures are expected to reach around USD9bn to USD10.5bn, lower than last year's record figure, Cushman and Wakefield said.
China's manufacturing PMI slips to three-month low in AugustAug 21, 2014
China’s manufacturing PMI slowed to a three-month low in August, dropping to 50.3 from July’s 18-month high of 51.7, the preliminary HSBC/Markit Flash China Manufacturing PMI showed. The manufacturing gauge also missed analysts' estimates for the month as a credit slowdown and property slump add to risks that China's economy will miss its growth target this year. The 50.3 August PMI was the lowest reading since May, though the PMI stayed above the 50-point level that separates growth in activity from contraction for a third consecutive month. The latest PMI reading, said HSBC China chief economist Hongbin Qu, showed that the world's second-largest economy is still recovering but the momentum has slowed again. The final PMI reading for August is scheduled for release on 1 September.
BOC profits hit by bad loans in H1Aug 20, 2014
The Bank of China Ltd revealed that bad loans have upset their profit increase in H1 of this year. The BOC, China's fourth-biggest bank, is the first of the country's largest state-controlled banks to come out with their H1 results. According to BOC, its net profit from January to June was at Rmb89.72bn (USD14.6bn) -- an 11% rise year-on-year, or slightly more than the Rmb89.56bn (USD14.58bn) median forecast of six analysts that The Wall Street Journal polled.
Beijing vows punishment against erring local, foreign firmsAug 20, 2014The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) stated that domestic or foreign companies in China who violate laws will be punished accordingly. NDRC Secretary General Li Pumin said China is ruled by law and everyone should be equal before it, regardless of whether they are domestic or foreign companies. Pumin made the pronouncement shortly after the NDRC said it had fined 12 auto part makers some USD200m for price manipulation.
China and Nepal to form airline JVAug 20, 2014Tibet Airlines of China, Nepal-based Yeti World Investment Co and HIF (Himalaya Infrastructure Fund) Aviation Investment Co have agreed to have Tibet Airlines enter the Nepalese market with the help of the two Nepalese air firms and start a new aviation company to be called Himalayan Airlines. The three parties formally signed their deal in the Nepalese capital of Kathmandu. The new firm will open direct flights from Kathmandu to Lasha and Kathmandu to Chengdu on the Airbus 319 and 320 aircraft.