Alibaba exposes up to $ 15 billion Hong Kong listing amid protests: sources

An Alibaba Group logo is seen at an exhibition at the World Intelligence Congress in Tianjin, China on May 16, 2019. Jason Lee, Reuters / File Photo

HONG KONG / NEW YORK – China's largest e-commerce company Alibaba Group Holding Ltd has delayed listing to $ 15 billion in Hong Kong amid growing political turmoil in the Asian economic hub, two people with knowledge of the matter told Reuters.

Alibaba held a board meeting before the last quarterly earnings release last week, where the board decided to postpone the listing in Hong Kong that would take place in late August, one of the people said.

The decision was made about the lack of financial and political stability in Hong Kong in the middle of more than 1[ads1]1 weeks of pro-democracy demonstrations that have become increasingly violent and plunged the city into turmoil, the people added.

Tear gas has been used frequently by police while more than 700 people have been arrested, foll owing to an unprecedented airport stop last week. Hong Kong's stock market also fell to seven months lower last week.

Although no new timetable has been set, Alibaba was able to launch the Hong Kong deal as early as October, trying to raise $ 10 to $ 15 billion when political tensions ease and market conditions again, the other source said.

"It would be very unwise to launch the deal now or at any time. It would certainly annoy Beijing by offering Hong Kong such a great gift given what is happening in the city," the source said.

Alibaba declined to comment on the agreement.

Both sources declined to be identified because they did not have authorization to speak to the media.

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