Chinese smartphone and connected device company Xiaomi, maker of the Mi Red Note 5, which is very popular in India, has filed for an IPO in Hong Kong. It expects to raise at least $10 billion, which will value eight-year old company at $100 billion.
It is the largest IPO by a Chinese company after Alibaba Group Holding Ltd raised $21 billion in 2014.
The company is controlled by billionaire Lei Jun. Xiaomi was little-known in 2014 when it became China’s third-largest smartphone vendor, after Apple and Samsung. It sold phones with the latest processors and features at half the price of competing devices.
The company said its revenue was 114.62 billion yuan ($18 billion) in 2017, up 67.5 percent against 2016. It also said it made a net loss of 43.89 billion yuan versus a profit of 491.6 million yuan in 2016. Operating profit for 2017 was 12.22 billion yuan, up from 3.79 billion yuan a year ago.
After an unsuccessful attempt to expand quickly overseas, the company scaled back international operations and focused on India, where it’s now the top seller alongside Samsung. Then the company ramped up investments in dozens of businesses that make interconnected devices like fitness monitors, luggage, water purifiers, rice cookers and personal scooters. To reach more customers, Xiaomi started offline sales in addition to online.
Last year the Xiaomi moved into the Spain market and reports suggest it is also looking to get into the US to take on Apple.