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Chinese AI firm SenseTime looks to raise $767.5m from HK IPO

By Mensholong Lepcha

08:12, 8 December 2021

SenseTime logo on smartphone
The company will start trading on the Hong Kong stock exchange on 17 December – Photo: Shutterstock

Chinese artificial intelligence (AI) firm SenseTime Group looks to raise up to $767.5m from its ongoing Hong Kong initial public offering (IPO) despite its unit being blacklisted by the US.

The company started receiving IPO orders on Tuesday and will start trading on the Hong Kong stock exchange on 17 December.

SenseTime is offering 1.5bn class B shares at a maximum offer price of HKD3.99 per share.

Unit on US blacklist

SenseTime in its IPO application flagged that its unit, Beijing SenseTime, was added to the US blacklist in October 2019.

The company added that the inclusion of its unit to the US blacklist “restricts its ability to purchase or otherwise access certain goods, software and technology and may adversely affect our business, financial condition and results of operations.”


15,876.80 Price
-0.320% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0262%
Short position overnight fee 0.0040%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
Spread 1.8

Oil - Crude

75.98 Price
+0.940% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0165%
Short position overnight fee -0.0054%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.040


0.61 Price
+0.080% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.01168


2,047.10 Price
+0.580% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0196%
Short position overnight fee 0.0114%
Overnight fee time 22:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.50

SenseTime had also said that discontinuation of government subsidies currently available “could adversely affect our business, financial condition, results of operations and prospects”.

IPO proceeds

Hong Kong-based AI firm will use 60% of the IPO proceeds for research and development, while the remainder will be used for business expansion, acquisitions and general corporate purposes.

The company’s revenue for full-year 2020 rose over 13% year-on-year to CNY3.45bn ($530m), according to its IPO application.

Full-year loss widened to CNY12.16bn from CNY4.97bn a year ago, while research and development expenses rose 28% year-on-year to CNY2.45bn in 2020.

Read more: Next generation weather forecaster going public

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The difference between trading assets and CFDs
The main difference between CFD trading and trading assets, such as commodities and stocks, is that you don’t own the underlying asset when you trade on a CFD.
You can still benefit if the market moves in your favour, or make a loss if it moves against you. However, with traditional trading you enter a contract to exchange the legal ownership of the individual shares or the commodities for money, and you own this until you sell it again.
CFDs are leveraged products, which means that you only need to deposit a percentage of the full value of the CFD trade in order to open a position. But with traditional trading, you buy the assets for the full amount. In the UK, there is no stamp duty on CFD trading, but there is when you buy stocks, for example.
CFDs attract overnight costs to hold the trades (unless you use 1-1 leverage), which makes them more suited to short-term trading opportunities. Stocks and commodities are more normally bought and held for longer. You might also pay a broker commission or fees when buying and selling assets direct and you’d need somewhere to store them safely.
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