FWD, an Asian insurance company founded by the son of Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka-shing, has applied for an initial public offering in the United States, which will be one of the largest listings this year.
The company was founded by Richard Li in 2013 and said Thursday that it had secretly filed an IPO application with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. This allows it to file documents with the US Securities and Exchange Commission before publicly submitting the prospectus.
FWD said that the number of American depositary shares to be issued and the IPO price range have not yet been determined, and the listing time is subject to regulatory approval. But according to people familiar with the matter, the company may seek US$200-300 million from the stock sale.
FWD has actively expanded in Asia and quickly launched its network in 10 countries/regions, including Japan, the Philippines, Vietnam, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, and Cambodia.
The insurance company has nearly 10 million customers, more than $63 billion in assets, approximately 6,100 employees, and 33,000 agents.
Lee founded FWD by acquiring ING’s pension and insurance businesses in Thailand, Hong Kong and Macau for US$1.2 billion. FWD CEO Huynh Thanh Phong’s expansion strategy focuses on combining entry into new Asian markets with the use of technology to reduce the paperwork and complexity common to industries in the region.
As rival financial groups withdrew from the region, the group annexed competitors, including MetLife’s Hong Kong business And Thailand’s insurance business Siam Commercial Bank, The industry’s largest acquisition in Southeast Asia in history.
“[SCB was] A prize asset that everyone wants to pursue,” Phong Tell the financial times In an interview this year. FWD eventually acquired Standard Chartered Bank for approximately 93 billion baht (US$3 billion) in 2019, bringing its bancassurance market share in Thailand to 36%, surpassing the sum of the next three groups.