Ride-hailing giant Didi to delist from New York Stock Exchange

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The move comes after the company ran after Chinese authorities with a US$4.4 billion IPO in July.

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Ride-hailing giant Didi Global said on Friday it would delist from the New York Stock Exchange and pursue a listing in Hong Kong due to pressure from Chinese regulators concerned about data security.

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It was put on hold by Chinese officials, pushing it forward with its $4.4bn US IPO in July while its data practices were reviewed.

China’s powerful Cyberspace Administration (CAC) immediately ordered the App Store to remove 25 mobile apps operated by Didi and also asked the company to stop registering new users, citing national security and public interest. Sister’s investigation is going on.

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“After careful research, the company will immediately begin delisting on the New York Stock Exchange and prepare for listing in Hong Kong,” Didi said on her Twitter-like Weibo account.

It later said in a separate English-language statement that its board had approved the move.

“The Company shall hold a meeting of shareholders to vote on the above matter at an appropriate time in future, following the necessary procedures.”

Didi debuts in New York in June [Brendan McDermid/Reuters]

Sources told Reuters that Chinese regulators pressured Didi’s top executives to work out a plan to delist it from the New York Stock Exchange due to concerns about data security.

Kenny Ng, securities strategist at Everbright Sun Hung Kai in Hong Kong, said, “Didi’s plan in the United States and listing of Hong Kong stocks, I believe, will have a clear impact on location decisions for future listings of large technology stocks.” “

“At the same time, this event gives the market confidence that the current industry supervision of technology stocks in the mainland will continue, and the decline in the stock price of technology stocks listed in Hong Kong today also reflects this factor.”

Sources have told Reuters that Didi is preparing to relaunch its apps in the country by the end of the year, in the hope that Beijing’s cybersecurity investigation into the company will be completed by then.

The CAC did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Didi’s plan to remove the list from New York.

Didi made its debut in New York on June 30 at $14 per US depository share, giving the company a valuation of $67.5bn on a non-diluted basis. Those shares are down 44 per cent as of Thursday’s close, which is valued at $37.6bn.

Shares of Didi investor SoftBank Group Corp fell more than 2 percent after Didi’s announcement, which was also hurt by a slump in Nasdaq’s debut, Southeast Asia ride-hailing giant Grab.

According to a filing in June by Didi, SoftBank’s Vision Fund holds 21.5 percent of Didi, followed by Uber Technologies Inc. with 12.8 percent.

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