Hairun Media & Entertainment began promoting its US$1.55 billion initial public offering yesterday and plans to kick off a road show next week.
The Beijing-based television series producer plans to list its shares on the Hong Kong market. If the listing goes ahead, it will be the first mainland television series producer to list in the city.
Hairun will use about 65 per cent of the proceeds to fund the production of television series, according to a term sheet for the IPO obtained by Bloomberg. Deutsche Bank and Nomura are managing the IPO.
One of the largest privately-owned television series producers on the mainland, Hairun has made more than 2,500 episodes for 80-odd series in the past 10 years, according to its website. It is producing about 600 episodes a year at present.
In addition to producing shows for the Chinese market, it also distributes programmes in Asia, Europe and the United States.
The mainland is the biggest producer of television series in the world. The State Administration of Radio, Film and Television says the number is likely to increase.
Hairun and PCCW's now TV last November formed a joint venture company to establish a Hairun channel in Hong Kong, which was launched last month.
The channel offers a 24-hour menu of drama programmes produced by Hairun but edited and packaged by Now TV to suit the tastes of Hong Kong and overseas Chinese audiences.
The two companies also plan to jointly expand into overseas markets for Chinese TV dramas in Southeast Asia, North America and other parts of the world.
Some of Hairun's productions are household names on the mainland, including Jade Goddess of Mercy, The VI Group of Fatal Case Series, and Drawing Sword.
Whether they prove equally successful in Hong Kong is yet to be tested, as the television series are broadcast in Putonghua, with traditional Chinese subtitles.
The number of episodes for television series that the mainland produces each year. It's the largest output in the world