SenseTime Group, China’s largest artificial intelligence (AI) company, has hired HSBC to help it pursue an initial public offering in Hong Kong that could raise at least US$2 billion, according to a person familiar with the matter. The Hong Kong-based start-up, known for its facial-recognition software, has also tapped China International Capital Corp (CICC) for the offering and could file paperwork for a Hong Kong listing in the next few weeks, the person said. SenseTime was blacklisted alongside a group of Chinese technology champions by the Trump administration in 2019 and added to the so-called entity list, which prevents it from buying from American suppliers. That has caused it to steer away from American underwriters. The timing and size of its potential listing in Hong Kong are preliminary and could change, the person said. HSBC and SenseTime declined to comment on Tuesday. Bloomberg reported HSBC’s hiring earlier on Tuesday. The potential listing comes as China has cracked down on the country’s tech sector and implemented sweeping changes to overhaul its rules for overseas listings by companies that hold the personal data of 1 million or more Chinese people. The move has caused a number of technology firms to delay or scrap planned US listings this year and some companies to pause Hong Kong listings. Cloud Village, the music-streaming subsidiary of NetEase, put its Hong Kong IPO on hold because of unfavourable market conditions earlier this month. Founded in 2014, SenseTime develops AI technology used in a variety of uses, including autonomous driving, augmented reality, facial recognition and medical imaging. Its technology is being used in smart city and smart auto initiatives in China. The US previously accused SenseTime, alongside 27 other companies and government security bureaus, of aiding alleged human rights abuses against Uygur Muslims in China’s Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region , including mass surveillance. Regarding its blacklisting, SenseTime has said it abides by all relevant laws and regulations where it operates. It also said it has been developing an AI code of ethics to ensure its technology is used responsibly. Despite the blacklisting, SenseTime’s business surged in 2020 as local governments in China implemented the company’s technology as part of their efforts to control the spread of the coronavirus pandemic . SenseTime was valued at more than US$8 billion after completing its most recent round of fundraising in December. It has raised US$2.6 billion in nine rounds of fundraising since its inception, according to Crunchbase. Its investors include SoftBank Group Corp , Temasek Holdings and Alibaba Group Holding , the owner of the Post .