initial public offerings (IPOs) trading on American exchanges

Friday, September 14, 2018

Qutoutiao (QTT) began trading on the Nasdaq on 14 September 2018

  • Chinese content aggregator Qutoutiao Inc, backed by the country’s technology giant Tencent Holdings Ltd.
  • HQ: Shanghai, China

Priced downsized 12 mln ADS IPO (from 16 mln ADS) at $7.00, the low-end of the expected $7.00-9.00 range

The content aggregator start-up Qutoutiao, which means "fun headlines" in Chinese, collects articles and short videos from professional media and freelancers, and then presents customized feeds to users on its namesake mobile application. These feeds are optimized in real time based on each user’s profile, behavior and social relationships through the application’s AI-powered content recommendation engine.

The company ranks second among all the news apps in Apple’s Chinese App Store as of the writing, only after its biggest rival Toutiao, a Beijing-based news and information content platform.

Qutoutiao monetizes its platform mainly through advertising. Overall revenue grew to $101.2 million in the first six months of the year, up from just $16.1 million in the first half of 2017. Losses swelled as well, reaching $78 million in the first half of 2018, up from $4.3 million a year earlier. It had 17.1 million daily active users, as of July, who spent an average of 55.6 minutes on the platform each day.

Qutoutiao has close ties to Tencent, which was a lead investor in its series A financing round in January 2017 and series B financing round in March 2018.

Citigroup Global Markets, Deutsche Bank Securities, China Merchants Securities (HK) Co Ltd and UBS Securities and KeyBanc Capital Markets are the underwriters for the company’s American IPO.

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