HKEx CEO: Bitmain’s IPO Crashing Down by Lack of “Suitability”

The Beijing-based Bitcoin mining giant Bitmain is facing major headwinds in its attempt to launch an IPO in Hong Kong. On January 23, Cheif Executive Officer of Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing (HKEx) claimed that Bitcoin mining firms’ IPO could fail due to lack of suitability at the World Economic Forum in Davos.

“For the IPO, HKEx’s core principle is the market suitability. The exchange would assess whether the business model proposed by the listed company to investors is suitable for listing.

Let’s say a company has made billions of dollars in business A, but suddenly turns to do business B without any achievements. It insists that the business model B is better, then I would consider whether the business model A filed for listing is not sustainable.

In addition, from the regulatory perspective, we are wondering if mining firms could still make a profit under a robust regulatory framework,” said HKEx CEO Charles Li in responding to the mining firm IPO issue in an interview with Tencent News.

Although Li didn’t mention the company name, all the clues target Bitmain, the mining giant that disclosed its AI expansion in May 2018.

In the previous year, mining giants including Bitmain, Canaan, and Ebang faced a crisis in their most profitable business. The crypto crash, in addition to the dry season in mining center Sichuan, force mining farms to purchase expensive thermal electricity, the mining profit cannot cover the electricity and labor cost.

Obviously, under the double pressure from both the bear market and governmental regulation, none of those three mining firms meet the “suitability” requirement.

Although Bitmain, the most promising company is attempted to transform its business model to AI, it would be unprofitable in the near future.

On September 26, 2018, Bitmain filed a $3 billion IPO that lapses in March 2019. It seems that the company is less likely to get listed in the following two months. Li also add in the interview that companies may still conserve the right to appeal if they are not satisfied with HKEx’s assessment.

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