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Sina rumoured to be prepping Weibo for $500m US-based IPO

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Chinese web giant Sina has picked two of the big banks to prep its Twitter-alike microblogging site Weibo for an IPO in the US.

Goldman Sachs and Credit Suisse have been taken on to help the site manage a debut onto the market in New York, sources told the Financial Times and Reuters. Weibo, which is hugely popular in China, is reportedly planning to start trading in the second quarter and is hoping to raise around $500m on its debut.

The last sign of what the firm is potentially worth came last year when Asian ecommerce behemoth Alibaba paid $568m for an 18 per cent stake, valuing Weibo at around $3.3bn. A source told the Wall Street Journal that if Weibo went public, Alibaba would consider upping its stake in the firm to 30 per cent.

Alibaba itself is also widely expected to take to the public markets some time this year, in an IPO that could value the firm at over $100bn.

Sina, which is already listed in the US, said that it did not comment on market rumours. ®

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