Ant Group to raise $17.5 bln via Hong Kong IPO without cornerstone investors -sources


HONG KONG, Sept 23 (Reuters) - China's Ant Group plans to raise about half of its $35 billion dual listing via the Hong Kong leg, without setting up a cornerstone tranche and betting on strong demand from institutional investors even without lock-up commitments, sources said.

Backed by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba BABA.N, Ant plans to list simultaneously in Hong Kong and on Shanghai's STAR Market next month, in what could be the world's largest IPO, surpassing oil giant Saudi Aramco's $29.4 billion float last December.

The company is seeking to raise about $35 billion in the dual IPO after assessing early investor interest and based on a higher valuation of about $250 billion or more, Reuters has reported.

Ant did not respond to a request for immediate comment.

(Reporting by Julie Zhu; editing by Jason Neely)

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