×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

China’s iQIYI Takes Further Step Toward IPO (Report)

Chinese video streaming giant iQIYI is edging nearer to an IPO in the U.S. The company could seek to raise $1 billion of fresh capital.

International Financing Review, part of Thomson Reuters, said Tuesday that the company had confidentially filed documents for the share sale. iQIYI declined to comment when contacted by Variety.

The report is in line with earlier details which emerged late last year. In September, Bloomberg reported that the company was seeking an $8-10 billion value on flotation. In October, IFR said that iQIYI had retained Bank of America, Credit Suisse and Goldman Sachs to advise on the listing.

Roughly 80% owned by NASDAQ-listed Baidu, China’s leading search-engine group, iQIYI operates a mixture of ad-supported and subscription services. It had 481 million monthly active users at the end of 2016, and is believed to have since increased its paying subscriber base to more than 60 million since then.

The company has been loss-making as it carved out market position and as it invested heavily in a mixture of original and acquired content. In 2017, iQIYI raised $1.3 billion from backers including Hillhouse Capital, IDG and Sequoia Capital for ongoing content spend.

Among the three streaming leaders in China, iQIYI has been forecast by JP Morgan to become the first to move into profitability, possibly as early as this year. But at this point its valuation remains a guesstimate. In 2016 iQIYI’s founder, Gong Yu, and Baidu co-founder Robin Li together tried to take the company private and buy the company from Baidu. Their $2.8-billion offer was challenged by U.S. investors and quickly withdrawn.

There are also question marks over the appetite of U.S. investors for Chinese companies. Several hundred have listed in the U.S., but many have lost support. Some have de-listed in the U.S. and then relisted on exchanges either in Hong Kong or in mainland China.

More Biz

  • Walt Disney Archives Founder Dave Smith

    Walt Disney Archives Founder Dave Smith Dies at 78

    Walt Disney Archives founder Dave Smith, the historian who spent 40 years cataloging and preserving the company’s legacy of entertainment and innovation, died Friday in Burbank, Calif. He was 78. Smith served as Disney’s chief archivist from 1970 to 2010. He was named a Disney Legend in 2007 and served as a consultant to the [...]

  • Colin Kaepernick Kneel

    Colin Kaepernick, Eric Reid Reach Settlement With NFL

    Colin Kaepernick and Eric Reid, two football players who alleged the National Football League colluded to oust them from the game after they started kneeling in protest of racial inequality during the playing of the national anthem, have reached a settlement in the matter, according to a statement from the sports organization and lawyers representing [...]

  • R. Kelly

    R. Kelly Could Be in ‘Big Trouble’ Over Alleged New Sex Tape, Attorney Says

    Strong allegations of sexual misconduct have followed R. Kelly for 25 years, but the singer has always managed to slip free. Yet reports that a videotape of him sexually assaulting an underage girl, combined with the outcry surrounding the Lifetime documentary “Surviving R. Kelly,” means that public sentiment, at the very least, is definitely not [...]

  • Christian Bale as Dick Cheney in

    New Media Residuals and Feature Films Contribute to Spike in Writers' Pay

    The outlook for members of the Writers Guild of America has brightened — even amid pervasive uncertainty in the entertainment industry. According to the most recent report to WGA West members, earnings surged 2.8% to $1.41 billion in 2017, thanks mostly to gains in feature films and new-media residuals. Total covered earnings for WGA West [...]

  • Joe Dante Gremlins

    Hollywood Execs Seek Licensing Deals at the New York Toy Fair

    On Feb. 16 more than 30,000 studio executives, buyers and toy company reps will gather in Manhattan for the annual Toy Fair New York, all vying for market share and trying to snag the latest hot trend in a fast-changing industry. Those working the film side of the business will focus much of their attention [...]

  • Lady Gaga Bradley Cooper A Star

    Universal Music Group Fuels 11.3% Rise in Vivendi's 2018 Revenues

    Vivendi’s revenues were up 11.3% to €13.93 billion ($15.7 billion) in 2018, powered by Universal Music Group, which delivered such hits as the “A Star Is Born” soundtrack and Drake’s new album. UMG’s revenues climbed by 10% to €6 billion ($6.8 billion) compared to 2017. On top of the “A Star Is Born” soundtrack, the [...]

  • The Blacklist 100th Episode

    'The Blacklist' EP Sues for Wrongful Termination

    A former executive producer of the NBC show “The Blacklist” has filed suit against Sony, alleging he was fired after being wrongfully blamed for a workplace scuffle. Michael Watkins is a veteran TV director and cinematographer. He was an executive producer for several seasons of “The Blacklist,” the NBC crime show starring James Spader. According [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content