Kakao Pay files for possible $10bn IPO

Norbert Gehrke
Apr 29 · 2 min read

On April 26, publicly listed Kakao has filed for preliminary approval to list its Kakao Pay subsidiary on the Korean Stock Exchange (KRX), with the IPO expected for July 2021, which would make it the country’s first mobile FinTech startup to list.

In a separate filing, preliminary approval was also sought for Kakao Bank, which then would also become the first digital-only bank on the KRX.

Established as a function within the Kakao app ecosystem in 2014, Kakao Pay was segregated into its own subsidiary in 2017, when Ant Financial (now Ant Group) invested USD 200m. As of the time of filing, Kakao held 56.1% of the shares versus Ant’s 43.9%.

Kakao Pay reportedly has around 36 million users who have conducted KRW 67trn of transactions in 2020, for a net loss of USD 22.5m on roughly USD 250m of revenue.

As reported by KoreaTechToday, Kakao Pay shares are expected to price between KRW 73,700 to KRW 96,300, leading to a valuation of USD 8.8bn to USD 11.5bn.

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