Financial service group Softbank Investment International (Strategic) has raised HK$60 million by selling new shares. The company yesterday suspended trading and sold 200 million new shares at 30 HK cents a share to institutional investors. The share placement aims at funding potential private equity investments and helping set up a fund which will invest in China related stocks, according to chief executive Wong Sin-just. Softbank, the Hong Kong off-shoot of battered Internet investor Softbank Corp of Japan, sees investment potential in the mainland as it opens its door to foreign competition. Now that the dotcom bubble has burst, Hong Kong-based Softbank will focus on China-concept investments. 'As Softbank Investment Group's vehicle for making and managing investments in China, we look forward to the new funds arising from this placing to enable us to forge ahead in our commitment towards the development of the China market,' he said. 'China's entry into the WTO also makes this an opportune time for us to actively facilitate the increasing flow of funds into this region and to allow investors to leverage upon Softbank's investment expertise and track-record.' Mr Wong said 'several' acquisition targets had been identified and announcements about the deals were expected soon. The new shares, equivalent to 8.18 per cent of the enlarged share capital, were placed to about six institutional investors. The issue price represented a 6.25 per cent discount to the last closing price of 32 HK cents on Friday. It also represented a 19.46 per cent discount to the average closing price of 37.25 HK cents over a period of 10 trading days to last Friday. 'The response [to the share sale] was pretty good,' Mr Wong said.