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THE INVESTOR
June 12, 2021

Market Now

Mirae Asset bets on global unicorns eyeing IPOs

  • PUBLISHED :April 14, 2021 - 10:41
  • UPDATED :April 14, 2021 - 10:41
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Mirae Asset Securities’ headquarters in Seoul (Mirae Asset Securities)

South Korean brokerage firm Mirae Asset Securities is betting big on global startups going public on US stock markets.

Chinese ride-hailing giant Didi Chuxing recently submitted its regulatory filing to the US Securities and Exchange Commission for its debut on the New York Stock Exchange. According to Bloomberg, the company’s estimated valuation stands at nearly $100 billion. When Mirae Asset invested about 300 billion won ($266.65 million) in the firm in 2018, it was valued at $56 billion.

Southeast Asian ride-hailing and food delivery giant Grab is also preparing to go public this year via one of Altimeter Capital’s special purpose acquisition companies. Along with Naver, Mirae Asset invested $150 million through their 50:50 joint venture Mirae Asset-Naver Asia Growth Fund, which launched in 2018.

When Seoul-based Mirae Financial Group and Naver made their investment in August, the valuation of Grab came in at $11 billion. However, the industry now forecast that its value is likely to reach $35 billion after the SPAC listing.

Mirae Asset has also expanded its pre-IPO investment portfolios both in and out of Korea, including Chinese drone manufacturer DJI, e-commerce company Bukalapak, Indonesian-based online grocery delivery platform HappyFresh and India’s leading online supermarket shopping app BigBasket. It also made an investment in Naver Financial, a financial platform by Korean internet giant Naver.

The total amount of Mirae Asset’s pre-IPO investments in the companies have exceeded 1 trillion won, the officials said. As the brokerage firm saw a high growth potential for fourth industrial revolution-based industries, it made active pre-IPO investments in the related industries such as sharing economy and bio, they explained.

Officials said the idea of expanding its global investment portfolio was based the philosophy of the parent firm’s chairman. Park Hyeon-joo, the founder of Mirae Asset Financial Group, recently highlighted the importance of “investing in innovative companies” via the brokerage’s YouTube channel.

By Jie Ye-eun (yeeun@heraldcorp.com)

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