Asian IPOs In U.S. set to rise

The Nasdaq stock exchange could see a rise in the number of Asia-Pacific companies listing this year, driven by the global economic recovery from Covid-19, according to Vice Chairman Robert McCooey Jr. In 2019, prior to the pandemic, 33 Asia-Pacific companies were listed on the Nasdaq, with all but five coming from China, highlighting China’s position as the world’s second-largest economy and the strength of its tech sector. McCooey noted that the pipeline is “super strong” with 94 active Asia-Pacific businesses currently in the process of going public through the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

While China has traditionally been the leading country in terms of listings on the Nasdaq, McCooey believes this year, the stage may be shared with other Asia nations, as only half of the F-1 filers are from Chinese companies. The Nasdaq is predominantly for U.S. companies, which make up 80% of the businesses trading on the platform, however, around 800 of the remaining 20% are based overseas, including China’s JD.com and Trip.com.

Last year, despite the pandemic, 48 international listings came to the Nasdaq, with 30 of those from the Asia-Pacific. The year has started well with four international listings so far, three from the Asia-Pacific. The easing of Covid restrictions in China and the recent agreement over auditing Chinese-listed firms has also given a boost to hopes of a recovery in Chinese listings.

McCooey also believes U.S. listings by companies from Southeast Asia could be poised for a successful year in 2023, due to the growth of the companies in the region, particularly in industries such as technology, healthcare, consumer logistics, and robotics. In the past few months, 18 Asia-Pacific companies have filed F-1s, with four coming from Singapore.

However, confidence among listees and investors will also play a role in determining the success of listings, McCooey says. He also does not believe that tensions between the U.S. and China, such as the recent downing of a suspected spy balloon, will have an impact on listings, as tensions have been present for decades.

Overall, McCooey believes that the favorable business climate, combined with the growth of the companies in the region, will result in a successful year for Asia-Pacific listings on the Nasdaq.

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