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Prudential plans to raise $2.4b from Hong Kong offering

The Prudential Plc logo is displayed on a banner atop a building in Hong Kong, Aug 9, 2018. (ANTHONY KWAN / BLOOMBERG)

Prudential Plc plans to raise as much as $2.4 billion from its Hong Kong share offering after pricing the stock at a slight discount to its last close in the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region.

The London-based insurer is selling up to 130.8 million shares at HK$143.80 apiece, it said in a statement on Saturday. 

The prospective price represents a discount of 2.6 percent on the stock’s last close in Hong Kong

Prudential plans to use proceeds from the offering to redeem existing high coupon debt, with the balance to contribute to investments in Asia and Africa, where Group Chief Executive Mike Wells has said the company will be “entirely focused on long-term structural growth opportunities.”

The prospective price represents a discount of 2.6 percent on the stock’s last close in Hong Kong. 

ALSO READ: Prudential aims to boost fund flexibility via HK stock sale

The offering comes just over a week after Prudential completed the demerger of its US unit, Jackson Financial Inc, a move that may accelerate its competition with pan-Asia life insurer rival AIA Group. The insurance conglomerate, already a leading player in Southeast Asian markets except Thailand, will face off more fiercely with AIA in the mainland.

Prudential’s share sale is one of HKSAR’s largest additional offerings of stock this year. 

The company has been open about its interest in increasing its stake in its mainland joint venture because of the rapid growth, Executive Director James Turner said last week.

Citigroup Inc, Goldman Sachs Group Inc, CLSA Ltd and HSBC Holdings Plc are joint global coordinators for the offering. Bank of America Corp, Credit Suisse Group AG, UBS Group AG and UOB Kay Hian are acting as joint bookrunners.

READ MORE: Prudential signs US$753m Thai deal with tycoon Li’s FWD

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