Two representatives of Ping An Good Doctor pose for photographs at a high-tech exhibition held in Beijing. The firm plans to go public on the Hong Kong bourse this year.(Photo by A Jing/for China Daily)
Ping An Good Doctor, the online healthcare and medical platform backed by Shenzhen-based Ping An Insurance Group, filed an application to list on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, firing the first shot for a fresh bout of Chinese mainland technology and internet companies looking to make their market debuts in Hong Kong this year.
The move marks the very first step in a process expected to pave the way for the first financial technology spinoff and separate listing by the insurance conglomerate on Hong Kong's Main Board.
The offering is said to value the Shanghai-headquartered Ping An Healthcare and Technology－Good Doctor's listed entity－at up to billion.
The move comes ahead of the much-hyped Hong Kong listing from Ping An-backed online peer-to-peer lending and wealth management platform Lufax－a deal set to raise as much as billion in April this year－and has put the Shanghai-based firm on course to become the city's biggest fintech flotation with a valuation of up to billion.
Founded in 2014 as a separate Ping An-backed healthcare subsidiary, Good Doctor, which offers free diagnosis and medical appointments, completed a 0 million round of fundraising two years ago, valuing the company at billion.
According to a statement filed with the Hong Kong Stock Exchange on Monday evening, a redacted form of the application proof of Ping An Healthcare and Technology's prospectus is expected to be available on the exchange's website from Tuesday.
The share price of Ping An Insurance, the country's largest insurer by market value, edged down by 0.5 percent to close at HK.20 (.50) in Hong Kong on Tuesday. Its Shanghai-listed shares remained flat to finish at 73.40 yuan (.60).
Hailed as the Chinese mainland's largest online healthcare and medical platform by number of users, Good Doctor represents the digital makeover of the country's under-doctored, overstretched and underfunded healthcare system.
Its major rival WeDoctor Group, an online healthcare service provider backed by internet giant Tencent Holdings Ltd, is also reported to be seeking a Hong Kong listing within the year, targeting a valuation of up to billion.
"The Good Doctor offering will unleash the potential of the insurer in the fintech and healthcare sectors, lending Ping An Insurance an edge to stand out from the competition," according to Credit Suisse analysts. "This may send a clear message that Ping An Insurance Group not only gains sustained momentum from its traditional financial services business, but also benefits from its new growth engine－the booming fintech sector."
Apart from Good Doctor and Lufax, Ping An Healthcare Management and financial cloud platform OneConnect are also said to be planning their market debuts in Hong Kong as the insurer's fintech spinoffs and separate listings this year.
Highly sought-after new economy companies offered a major boost to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange last year, a bourse that has long been dominated by enterprises in the traditional financial services and real-estate sectors－the twin pillars of the local economy.