Hong Kong billionaire Richard Li invests $200 mn in his insurer FWD Group

Hong Kong billionaire Richard Li is weighing investing about $200 million in his insurance company FWD Group Holdingsas part of a funding round, Bloomberg reported.

An investment would help support the insurer’s growth plans ahead of a long-awaited Hong Kong initial public offering, which could take place as soon as 2023. Other investors have also shown early interest in a fundraising for FWD ahead of its listing.

Terms of the funding round are still under consideration and details such as the size could change.

FWD refiled an application for a Hong Kong IPO in September against a backdrop of market volatility, giving the firm more time to prepare for the first-time share sale. It could seek to raise about $1 billion from the IPO.

The insurer’s value of new business rose 24.6% year over year to $405 million in the first half of 2022, on a constant exchange rate basis.

While FWD reported an adjusted loss of $333 million for the six months ended June 30, its operating profit before tax jumped about 111% to $200 million from the same period in 2021.

FWD a year ago raised more than $1.6 billion in private placements with investors including an insurer backed by Apollo Global Management Inc.

The placements were set to value the company at about $9 billion, which would imply about 1.2 to 1.3 times its embedded value.

by Yana Keller