(Yicai Global) Sept. 11 -- Huobi Group, a Chinese cryptocurrency exchange platform, has moved one step closer to a backdoor listing in Hong Kong after proposing to change the name of a public firm acquired last year and making its founder chairman of the subsidiary.
The China-founded but now Singapore-based group has appointed Leon Li as executive director, chairman and chief executive of electronics manufacturer Pantronics Holdings, it said in a press release today, just one day after declaring to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange that it planned to change its name to Huobi Technology Holdings.
Shares in Pantronics [HKG:1611] surged on the news, more than doubling in the morning session before closing the day out at HKD4.3 (55 US cents), a 38.7 percent gain. Two Huobi subsidiaries -- Huobi Capital and Huobi Universal -- paid around USD70 million for a near 66.3 percent share in Pantronics in August 2018 at roughly HKD2.72 a share.
Pantronics' reason for the change was to "better reflect the group's future strategic direction and development plan," according to the filing, which mentioned no changes to the company's equity structure. The firm will continue to develop its manufacturing business but is also looking to expand in the fast-growing tech fields, it added.
Shareholders will need to approve the name change at an extraordinary general meeting and the Registry of Corporate Affairs in the British Virgin Islands needs to sign off on the amendment.
Founded in 2013, Huobi was the first crypto trading platform on the Chinese mainland before regulators outlawed virtual currency exchanges in September 2017. In October that year, Huobi said it had moved its servers overseas and the firm now focuses on its global exchange center. It handled USD200 billion worth of transactions last year, pocking USD500 million in commission, according to an open letter published by Li at the beginning of this year.
Editor: James Boynton