For most companies and their owners, an initial public offering (IPO) is a “once-in-in-a-lifetime” event that represents the culmination of many years of hard work and personal investment. The IPO provides shareholders and management of the company with a significant sense of accomplishment, and represents one of the most important milestones in the corporate evolution of a company, for its owners, management, employees and other stakeholders.
An IPO, however, frequently also brings with it a sense of upheaval as significant changes are often required to be made to the way a company operates and conducts itself – membership of the new “public” world brings with it legal and compliance obligations that need to be both understood and present ongoing compliance challenges.
This guide provides an overview of a Hong Kong IPO process and some of the key issues with which we believe directors, members of senior management and other key decision makers of a potential IPO candidate should be familiar, and focuses on a listing on The Stock Exchange of Hong Kong Limited (the HKEx) and, to a lesser extent, a listing on a US stock exchange, such as the New York Stock Exchange (the NYSE) or Nasdaq.
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