Hong Kong’s richest property tycoon plans US SPAC

·2-min read
Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing, chairman of CK Hutchison Holdings company, waves after a press conference to announce the company's annual results in Hong Kong, Friday, March 16, 2018. Li said Friday he is retiring as chairman of his sprawling conglomerate and handing control to his eldest son. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)
Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-shing (PHOTO: AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

By Vinicy Chan

(Bloomberg) —Li Ka-shing, Hong Kong’s richest property tycoon, is planning to raise funds for dealmaking by listing a special purpose acquisition company in the U.S., people with knowledge of the matter said.

A company backed by Li’s family is working with advisers on the potential SPAC initial public offering, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. They are considering seeking around $400 million, though the exact terms haven’t been finalized, the people said.

The blank-check company could file registration documents with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission as soon as this week, the people said.

Li is lionised by the public in Hong Kong, where he’s been nicknamed “Superman” for his investing prowess. The 92-year-old businessman became famous for his well-timed bets on everything from real estate to social media as he built a corporate empire spanning 50 countries.

His family controls CK Hutchison Holdings Ltd., a US$29 billion conglomerate that owns one of the world’s biggest port operators and has telecommunications, retail and infrastructure operations across Asia and Europe. They also run CK Asset Holdings Ltd., which is one of Hong Kong’s largest developers and also has investments in hotels, utilities and aircraft leasing. Both companies are now led by Li’s elder son, Victor.

Li’s younger son, Richard, has already raised about US$900 million via two U.S.-listed SPACs with tech mogul Peter Thiel. Richard is considering setting up a third blank-check company, Bloomberg News reported last week.

No final decisions have been made, and details of the transaction could change, the people said. Representatives for Li didn’t immediately respond to emailed queries.

(Adds details about Richard Li’s SPAC plans in sixth paragraph.)

© 2021 Bloomberg L.P.