Chinese game-streaming platform DouYu prices U.S. IPO
Updated 21:19, 18-Jul-2019

DouYu International, China's largest Tencent backed live-streaming platform, priced its Nasdaq initial public offering on Wednesday.

DouYu said it had sold about 67.4 million American depositary shares (ADSs) at 11.50 U.S. dollars per share, raising 775 million U.S. dollars, which makes it the largest Chinese IPO in the United States so far in 2019.

Every 10 ADSs represent one ordinary share, said the company.

DouYu started trading at 11.02 U.S. dollars per share and closed at 11.50 U.S. dollars apiece at a 3.73 billion U.S. dollars valuation on the first day of trading.

The sponsors of the DouYu IPO include Morgan Stanley, JPMorgan, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, as well as CMB International.

Founded in 2014, the Wuhan-based company specializes in streaming online videos of eSports and other gaming events with exclusive streaming rights to 29 major tournaments in China, including League of Legends, PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds, and DOTA2, according to its IPO filing.

VCG Photo

VCG Photo

It is one of several Chinese start-ups in the growing market for live-streaming in the world's second-biggest economy, along with Huajiao and U.S.-listed Huya Inc. 

The rapid growth of the live-streaming sector has seen China's tech heavyweights - Tencent, Alibaba Group Holding Ltd and Baidu Inc - open their wallets to back a slew of firms in the hope of boosting existing services in e-commerce, social networking and gaming. 

DouYu's founder and CEO Chen Shaojie said that the listing on the Nasdaq marks a milestone for the company, which could help promote its branding globally and attract more talents. 

Chen said that the rapid expansion of China's game streaming market makes him confident about the company's future development. 

Among China's game-centric live streaming platforms, DouYu ranked first in terms of average total monthly active users (MAUs) and average total daily time spent by active users during the first quarter of 2019, according to consulting firm iResearch. 

"China has a fantastic total addressable market for so many businesses and certainly in the gaming business," Robert McCooey, chairman of Nasdaq Asia-Pacific, told Xinhua, adding that DouYu's debut on the Nasdaq "is a perfect match between the U.S. investors and the Chinese company." 

DouYu's ticker symbol is DOYU and its listing is an American Depository Receipt (ADR), a device that allows Chinese companies to list in the U.S. and for U.S. investors to trade its stock.

DouYu was due to list in May, but the IPO was postponed because of the global market sell-off back then that was prompted by the China-U.S. trade war.

(With input from agencies)

(John Terrett contributed to this story.)