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NetEase music IPO is back on

By | Published on Tuesday 23 November 2021

NetEase Cloud Music

The Initial Public Offering of NetEase’s music streaming business Cloud Village is back on, although with the target in terms of how much money will be raised through the stock market listing cut back.

Chinese web giant NetEase announced that it was going to spin off its music business and list it on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange back in May. However, the IPO plan was temporarily paused in August amid a crackdown by Chinese regulators, which have been scrutinising the operations of China’s tech companies much more rigorously of late.

In music specifically, that crackdown has had some up sides for NetEase, given that its main rival in music streaming – Tencent – was forced to end its exclusivity deals with music rights owners.

Previously streaming services like NetEase’s CloudMusic had to negotiate with their main competitor in order to access a whole load of music – although NetEase had already been slowly securing direct deals with some of the record companies that previously had exclusivity arrangements with Tencent.

Either way, the ongoing regulator crackdown in China created some uncertainties that could have negatively impacted on the big IPO. As a result, it seemed NetEase was willing to wait a while before ploughing on with the stock market listing.

But the waiting is over. In a new regulatory filing, NetEase has announced that its Cloud Village subsidiary will be listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange on 2 Dec. However, whereas earlier in the year sources told Reuters that NetEase hoped to raise $1 billion from the IPO, the target is now $500 million.