Hong Kong Gives Nod to Asia’s Biggest Healthcare Listing in 2020

(Bloomberg) — Chinese clinical research service provider Hangzhou Tigermed Consulting Co. has won approval from the Hong Kong stock exchange for its second listing, which could raise about $1 billion in what would be Asia’s largest health-care listing this year, according to people familiar with the matter.

Shenzhen-listed Tigermed could start gauging investor demand for the offering as soon as next week, the people said, asking not to be identified as the information is private. Tigermed’s shares have risen about 70{50531db320f8e8a316d79d6a285e47c71b6e4f6739df32858cb86474d7e720e9} in Shenzhen this year amid a broader rally in health-care stocks.

Tigermed joins a growing number of health-care and pharmaceutical companies seeking to sell shares at a record rate in Asia. The sector is this year’s second-best performer in the region as the coronavirus pandemic stokes investor interest in companies developing everything from better cancer detection and treatment to eye therapies. South Korea’s SK Biopharmaceutical Co. raised $784 million in June in Asia’s largest health-care IPO so far in 2020, and the shares have almost quadrupled from their offer price.

Founded in 2004, Tigermed provides biopharmaceutical research and development services, offering health-care companies clinical trials, statistical analysis and patient recruitment, according to its prospectus. It listed its U.S. unit, Frontage Holdings Corp., in Hong Kong last year.

Deliberations on Tigermed’s share sale are ongoing and details including size and timeline could still change, the people said. An external representative for Tigermed declined to comment.

Hong Kong in particular has seen a parade of biotech firms list with stunning returns and investors clamoring to get stock. Health-care companies have raised $3 billion through first-time share sales in the city this year, data compiled by Bloomberg show. They have risen an average 57{50531db320f8e8a316d79d6a285e47c71b6e4f6739df32858cb86474d7e720e9} from their offer prices, weighted by deal size, compared with a 27{50531db320f8e8a316d79d6a285e47c71b6e4f6739df32858cb86474d7e720e9} gain for all listings in the financial hub.

Bank of America Corp., Haitong International, CLSA and China International Capital Corp. are joint sponsors for Tigermed’s listing, according to a preliminary prospectus.

(Updates with background on company in fourth paragraph.)

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