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China's genomics company BGI makes stock market debut

Xinhua | Updated: 2017-07-14 15:59

BEIJING — China's genomics giant BGI made its initial public offering (IPO) Friday on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange, with shares surging by the upper limit of 44 percent shortly after its debut.

With an initial offering price of 13.64 yuan ($2), the company's share jumped more than 32 percent shortly after the market opening, triggering a temporary suspension on trading, before the share prices jumped again to reach the upper limit of 19.64 yuan after trading resumed.

According to market rules, share prices of stocks on their first day of trading on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange should not exceed 144 percent of the initial offering price.

The IPO bell was rung on Friday morning by a group of six people, made up of BGI's gene sequencing customers and people who care about rare diseases.

As gene technology integrates with the capital market, the company will offer more medical services to help greatly reduce the costs of gene sequencing and analysis and expand the biological database, said Wang Jian, chairman of BGI.

The ultimate goal is to let every person have access to the benefits of gene technology in the routine diagnosis and treatment, Wang said.

BGI, the 2,001st firm to be listed on the Shenzhen Stock Exchange, raised a total of 547 million yuan ($80.7 million) from the IPO.

The Shenzhen-based company runs the China National GeneBank that officially went into operation in September 2016.

Gene research is not only an effective way to prevent birth defects and diagnose genetic diseases at an early stage, but also of great significance in the treatment of diseases and protection of bio-diversity.

Founded in 1999, the gene sequencing firm offers a wide portfolio of genetic testing products across major diseases, enabling medical providers and patients worldwide to realize the promise of genomics-based diagnostics and personalized healthcare.

BGI's services and solutions are available in more than 60 countries and regions around the world, according to the company's website.

In 2016, the company made revenues of 1.71 billion yuan ($252 million) and net profits of 332.69 million yuan, according to filings on the exchange.

According to TF Securities, China's gene sequencing market has seen rapid growth and the market size has reached around 5.4 billion yuan in 2016, and will likely exceed 10 billion yuan by 2020.

The compound annual growth rate of the industry will be around 20 to 25 percent, among the fastest rates around the world, it said.

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