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FWD Group raises $200 million in pre-IPO financing – sources

Richard Li, Hong Kong businessman and younger son of tycoon Li Ka-shing, waves as he arrives to vote at the Hong Kong Chief Executive election March 26, 2017 in Hong Kong, China. REUTERS/Bobby Yip

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MELBOURNE, Jan 19 (Reuters) – Asian insurer FWD Group has raised US$200 million in new funding ahead of its planned initial public offering (IPO) in Hong Kong, according to two sources with direct knowledge of the matter.

Sources could not be identified as the information had not yet been made public. The FWD group declined to comment.

Two new investors, ORIX Corp (8591.T) and Huatai Securities Co (601688.SS), participated in the private placement, the sources said.

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ORIX declined to comment and Huatai did not respond to a Reuters request for comment.

The deal means Richard Li-backed FWD Group raised $1.6 billion last month after the company abandoned its U.S. IPO plans.

The initial $1.4 billion fundraising has valued FWD Group at $9 billion on a post-money basis, sources told Reuters in December.

It is now planning to stage a Hong Kong IPO after struggling to get full approval from US regulators for the New York listing.

FWD Group had planned to raise $2 billion to $3 billion for the US bid.

The company received preliminary approval from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in December to conduct a marketing roadshow for investors, but still needed full approval from regulators, sources told Reuters at the time.

FWD is present in 10 Asian markets according to its website.

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Reporting by Scott Murdoch in Melbourne. Editing by Gerry Doyle

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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