Chief Correspondent, Hong Kong
Michael's Feed
Jul 22, 2010

Analysis: Bank pay guarantees under spotlight as hiring returns

HONG KONG/NEW YORK (Reuters) – Investment banks are once again luring top rival talent with generous guaranteed pay packages that may convince a top banker to jump ship, while also inviting scrutiny from regulators across the globe.

Paying a banker multi-millions regardless of performance flies in the face of the global regulatory effort aimed at reining in mega packages and discouraging excessive risk-taking in the post financial crisis world.

Jul 22, 2010

Analysis: Asia’s budding bankers no longer feel need to go West

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Unlike many young, finance-focused Asian graduates before him, Boon Seong Lim is happy to stay close to home to launch his career.

Lim, aiming for a mergers and acquisitions department, represents a new wave of Asian recruits who don’t feel the pull of having to start on Wall Street or in London’s City, partly mirroring a broader shift in the global banking sector where talent and transactions are migrating from West to East.

Jul 18, 2010

AgBank’s Easter surprise showed China IPO lure

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Hong Kong investment bankers were just wrapping up work ahead of the long Easter weekend in early April when they were hit with a proposition that would upend their holiday plans.

Agricultural Bank of China, the country’s third-largest bank, was asking bankers to bid for its highly anticipated initial public offering — one that had not been expected until later in the year, or even 2011.

Jul 16, 2010

Special Report: AgBank’s Easter surprise showed China IPO lure

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Hong Kong investment bankers were just wrapping up work ahead of the long Easter weekend in early April when they were hit with a proposition that would upend their holiday plans.

Agricultural Bank of China (1288.HK: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) (601288.SS: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), the country’s third-largest bank, was asking bankers to bid for its highly anticipated initial public offering — one that had not been expected until later in the year, or even 2011.

Jul 7, 2010

China’s AgBank prices IPO to be world’s largest

HONG KONG/SINGAPORE (Reuters) – Agricultural Bank of China priced its Hong Kong and Shanghai dual listing on Tuesday, a deal that would break all IPO records by raising more than $22 billion when adding in over-allotment shares.

The initial public offering (IPO), which is raising funds to replenish capital, still faces a tough aftermarket, with a debut planned for July 15 in Shanghai, and a day later in Hong Kong. It has fought through a plunging Chinese stock market and a euro zone debt crisis that has shaken other markets across the globe.

Jul 6, 2010

MBK’s $2 billion Taiwan auction may have broader PE impact

HONG KONG (Reuters) – The implications of the auction for Taiwan cable TV company CNS may be felt far wider than just by the seller and the buyers involved.

On the surface, MBK Partners’ sale of CNS looks like a standard private equity exit, as the firm bought it for $1.5 billion in 2006, and is now looking to cash out after signing up Morgan Stanley (MS.N: Quote, Profile, Research) to advise it on the process.

Jul 5, 2010

Emerging market M&A gains share on West

SINGAPORE (Reuters) – A burst of corporate acquisition activity in Asia shows that executives throughout the region are gaining confidence in their financial outlook and expansion strategy, with cross-border deals on the upswing.

Asia Pacific M&A, excluding Japan, rose 78 percent last quarter, according to Thomson Reuters, with emerging market acquisitions now one-third of total deal volume.

Jul 5, 2010

Emerging market M&A gains share on West, led by Asia

SINGAPORE, July 5 (Reuters) – A burst of corporate
acquisition activity in Asia shows that executives throughout
the region are gaining confidence in their financial outlook
and expansion strategy, with cross-border deals on the upswing.

Asia Pacific M&A, excluding Japan, rose 78 percent last
quarter, according to Thomson Reuters, with emerging market
acquisitions now one-third of total deal volume.

Jul 1, 2010

AgBank HK offer 10 times oversubscribed by institutions

SHANGHAI/HONG KONG, July 1 (Reuters) – Agricultural Bank of
China’s [ABC.UL] Hong Kong share offering has been more than 10
times oversubscribed by institutional investors, signalling
their healthy interest in the dual-market listing that could
end up being the world’s largest ever.

AgBank, whose Shanghai-Hong Kong listing aims to raise more
than $20 billion, has received bids from institutional
investors worth around $50 billion for its Hong Kong offering,
a source with direct knowledge of the situation told Reuters on
Thursday.

Jun 24, 2010

AgBank’s total IPO may miss ICBC record

HONG KONG (Reuters) – Agricultural Bank of China plans to raise up to $11.4 billion in the Hong Kong leg of its dual-exchange IPO, sources close to the deal said, but its total offering, including a Shanghai listing, may fall short of the record set by Industrial and Commercial Bank of China.

AgBank, which is kicking off a formal marketing roadshow, set a proposed price range of HK$2.88-HK$3.48 a share for the Hong Kong offering, said the sources who are directly involved with the deal but cannot be named as the information is not yet public. AgBank could not be reached for comment.

    • About Michael

      "In June 2009, Michael Flaherty became a Chief Correspondent for Reuters News, leading a team of journalists who cover investment banking, mergers & acquisitions, private equity and hedge funds, equity capital markets, natural resources and property across Asia. He arrived in Hong Kong in Feb. 2008 as Reuters' Asia Financial Services correspondent, covering the investment banks and M&A. Flaherty was hired by Reuters in New York in Dec. 2003. He was voted Reuters Journalist of the Year for his 2007 coverage of the U.S. private equity boom and bust. He started at Reuters with the consumer group covering office retailers ..."
      Joined Reuters:
      Dec. 1, 2003
      Awards:
      Peninsula Press Club, 2002, Reuters Journalist of the Year, 2007, M&A International, 2007
    • Contact Michael

    • Follow Michael