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China's answer to Kindle soars on Hong Kong market debut
by Staff Writers
Hong Kong (AFP) Nov 8, 2017

Shares in Chinese internet giant Tencent's e-book arm, China Literature, almost doubled in value in its debut on the Hong Kong stock exchange Wednesday.

Shares in China Literature, the country's biggest online publishing business and Tencent's answer to Amazon's Kindle Store, opened at HK$90 ($11.53), which is 63.6 percent more than its HK$55 IPO price, and shot to a high of HK$109.8, before closing at HK$102.4.

The company calls itself a "pioneer" of China's online literature market, carrying 6.4 million writers and 9.6 million literary works.

Analyst Dickie Wong told AFP that investors saw a lot of potential in China Literature and its prospects for growth.

"I do see some of the authors, they can be very famous and some of their stories can become movies or soap operas and online games and cellphone games," said Wong, the executive director of research at Kingston Securities.

Tencent owns 62 percent of the firm, formerly known as China Reading, which was created through a merger between the internet giant's online literature arm and another Chinese online publisher Shanda Cloudary.

Castor Pang, head of research at Core Pacific Yamaichi securities firm, said the share price surge was "well beyond" his expectations, adding that there was high demand for internet companies.

The Shanghai-based firm is the fifth-largest IPO in Hong Kong this year, according to Bloomberg News, as the Asian financial hub is increasingly becoming a destination for tech companies.

Echoing Pang's view, Jackson Wong of Huarong International Securities, said investors were also buying into the Tencent brand.

"The concept that this kind of company will be the leader or changing people's lives, I think this is creating a kind of hype," he said, drawing parallels between Tencent's rise and Amazon's success.

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos is currently the world's richest man worth $95.1 billion, overtaking Bill Gates, worth $88.5 billion, according to Bloomberg News' Billionaire Index.

Popular selfie app developer Meitu debuted on the Hong Kong stock exchange in December after raising $629 million in the largest IPO by a tech company in the city in almost a decade.

Meitu targets teenagers and young adults who use the beautifying app to retouch selfie photos.

"I do think that in the future there would be more and more internet related companies listed in Hong Kong because they can see this time, especially with China Literature, they did quite well," analyst Dickie Wong said.

Video game accessories maker Razer is also looking to list in Hong Kong and is expected to raise at least $400 million.




Apple's $120 mn patent award from Samsung upheld by top US court
Washington (AFP) Nov 6, 2017
The US Supreme Court on Monday upheld a $120 million patent award Samsung was ordered to pay Apple in the latest ruling in a series of legal skirmishes between the top two smartphone makers. The US justices let stand without comment a 2016 appeals court verdict reinstating the award for Apple, which sued Samsung over patents for "slide to unlock" and other features used on smartphones. T ... read more

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