Guizhou-based trucking startup, the Full Truck Alliance is set to IPO in the US where it is expected to raise $1.57 billion at $17 to $19 per share said a filing at the US Securities and Exchange Commission. This would value it in the $30 billion region. This also means Zhang Hui its 42-year-old CEO who also owns 15 per cent of the company is poised to become a billionaire with a net worth of at least $1.7 billion revealed a story on Forbes. The Full Truck Alliance operates like the Uber of trucking in China connecting shippers with nearby truckers via a smartphone app. It brokers freight services across 300 Chinese cities. It also generates membership fees as well as brokerage charges that are based on the difference between the amounts collected from the shippers and truckers.
It already counts 1.3 million shippers and 2.8 million truckers and it had generated $396 million in sales. The company’s net loss increased to $532 million from $238 million in 2019. After raising money from top tier investors like Tencent, Softbank, Sequoia Capital China, it plans on using the fresh round to further enhance its infrastructure, service offerings and have room for technological innovation.
The Chinese startup could be valued at $30 billion post its US IPO
The Softbank vision fund alone owns about 20 per cent of the company. Zhang who was a former Alibaba executive founded trucking startup Yunmanman and agreed to merge it with its rival Huochebang in 2017.
The newly merged platform changed its name to Manbang and was headed by Wang Gang, a backer of Yunmanman and the angel investor best known for backing Didi Chuxing. Zhang took over as the CEO in 2018 and became the chairman in November 2020, while Wang Gang is no longer listed amongst the company’s directors and executive officers.
The Full Track Alliance as it is now known still faces huge challenges from younger competitors backed by Alibaba and Tencent who all are introducing new services and technologies.
“Despite the strong volume growth, it has also come at the expense of lower pricing of its services, driven by greater price competition of logistics services in China.,” writes Douglas Kim, an independent analyst who publishes via research platform Smartkarma.
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