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Singapore’s Sea raises US$2.6 billion in upsized stock offering

Bloomberg • 2 min read
Singapore’s Sea raises US$2.6 billion in upsized stock offering
The company just won a license to open a digital bank in Singapore.
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Singapore’s Sea, the tech startup that’s become Southeast Asia’s most valuable company, increased the size and set the final price of a secondary stock offering to raise at least US$2.57 billion ($3.43 billion).

Sea priced the sale of 13.2 million American Depositary Shares at US$195 each, increasing the size from 11 million because of strong demand, according to a statement. The underwriters, led by Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co., have the option for another 1.98 million ADS, which would yield US$386 million at the same price.

Sea, a games company that has expanded into e-commerce and digital payments, has surged to a market valuation of almost US$100 billion with its shares rising 395% this year alone. It intends to spend the proceeds from the new offering on business expansion, “including potential strategic investments and acquisitions,” the company said in its statement.

See: Sea ups the ante with stronger-than-expected 3Q20 results: CGS-CIMB

The company just won a license to open a digital bank in Singapore, a coveted award that will allow expansion into financial services. Under criteria set by the Monetary Authority of Singapore, digital full banks are required to have total capital of at least $1.5 billion, with $15 million at entry and progressively increasing the capital.

The new capital could be used for its digital bank or to accelerate e-commerce and gaming investments, Bloomberg Intelligence analysts Matthew Kanterman and Joyce Ho wrote in a note.

Sea’s first self-made mobile game, a battle royale called Free Fire, has attracted tens of millions of players and its gameplay is now one of YouTube’s most-watched attractions. The company’s Shopee platform has also surged in sync with greater demand for home shopping and food delivery, having taken the mantle of Southeast Asia’s leading e-commerce provider at the end of 2019, according to research firm iPrice.

Read more: World’s Hottest Stock Is a Money-Losing Tech Giant Soaring 880%

Investors have been betting on Sea becoming its region’s Tencent Holdings Ltd. and Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. rolled into one, though the company’s most recent quarterly results showed a slight slowdown in its prodigious growth rate.

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