ICBC's IPO attracts US$100 billion worth of orders

Updated: 2006-10-12 14:09

Industrial & Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) , the country's top lender, has attracted US$100 billion worth of institutional orders three days into its Hong Kong initial public offering, a source familiar with the situation said.

ICBC, which is raising around US$19 billion through a simultaneous Hong Kong and Shanghai listing that is on track to be the world's largest, started taking institutional orders on Monday, and will continue until October 19.

By 1000 GMT on Wednesday, that portion of its offering was more than 10 times covered, excluding US$3.9 billion of orders already pledged by 13 cornerstone investors, the source said.

The Beijing-based lender had drawn US$100 billion worth of orders for the 95 percent of H shares earmarked for institutional investors. Most of these are from Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan and the Middle East, the source said.

"ICBC's management and sponsors will start the marketing roadshow in the United States and Europe on Thursday, and I expect the order book will rise sharply," the source said.

ICBC is selling 33.62 billion H-shares for institutional investors in Hong Kong, in a price range of HK$2.56 to HK$3.07 per share, which is 1.96 to 2.23 times 2006 book value, lower than its peers.

The state-run lender, which is set to debut on October 27, will also sell 13 billion shares in Shanghai at a price range equivalent to the Hong Kong price after adjusting for exchange rates.

The simultaneous listing could topple the record US$18.4 billion set by the NTT Mobile Communications IPO in 1998.

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