Chinese firms who have recently listed in Hong Kong have had disappointing stock debuts, and movie ticketing app Maoyan has held on to the same trend with a weak opening in its IPO. It is China’s biggest platform for movie tickets by total sales, and despite high expectations, the Tencent backed firm made a tepid opening. The stock slumped 1.1% from its IPO price. Shares of Maoyan Entertainment were offered at an IPO price of HK$ 14.80, but once it was listed, the share prices barely moved and reached a price of only HK$ 14.82 at an opening.
The shares eventually fell to a low of HK$14 and this sort of listing day performances has been the norm for Chinese tech companies recently. Many of the companies have been going for an IPO after achieving big ticket valuations through private equity funding, and most of those have had disappointing opening day performances in the Hong Kong stock market. That being said, Maoyan’s poor performance is also down to the reduced trading volumes in the stock market in Hong Kong due to the Lunar New Year and shortened trading sessions, according to analysts. Aequitas Research head of research Ke Yan said, “While on the one hand there’s a lack of demand for the name given the limited upside in the online movie ticketing market in terms of market penetration, on the other hand, the upcoming Chinese holiday season could be another contributing factor for the thin volume and the poor performance.”
Maoyan has not been able to generate any profits, but the company expected a much bigger raise from its IPO than the $250 million that it has raised so far. This IPO is being seen as a bellwether of sorts for Hong Kong listings for Chinese companies. In 2018, IPOs of most Chinese firms had proven to be disappointing, and the US-China trade war has also been a big factor in the whole thing. The slowdown in the Chinese economy and weakness in the stock markets across the world has resulted seen as some of the big reasons behind the downward spiral of Chinese tech stocks. Maoyan has not turned a profit as yet, but until September 2018, the company has been able to lower its losses from 152.1 million yuan to 144 million yuan. Revenues doubled as well and reached 3.1 billion yuan.