Best Securities House in the Greater Bay Area 2022
China International Capital Corp
CICC’s international background (it was established in 1995 as a joint venture between Morgan Stanley and China Construction Bank) means it has long played a critical role in China’s global ambitions.
When China Telecom listed in Hong Kong in 1997, marking the first overseas IPO from a Chinese state-owned company, CICC was a bookrunner along with Goldman Sachs. More than two decades on, CICC remains a leading bank for Beijing’s global ambitions, including for the Greater Bay Area.
The GBA is a large-scale project aimed at knitting Hong Kong and Macau closer together with nine municipalities in Guangdong province in mainland China: Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Zhuhai, Foshan, Huizhou, Dongguan, Zhongshan, Jiangmen and Zhaoqing.
So it certainly helps that of roughly 14,000 CICC employees, about 25% are based in Hong Kong and in Guangdong. Of CICC’s total revenues, one quarter comes from Hong Kong and Guangdong.
When the investment bank completed its acquisition in 2018 of China Investment Securities, a brokerage based in Shenzhen, it further boosted CICC’s scope and footprint in the GBA. And tying up with Tencent Digital in late 2019 to establish a technological joint venture helped CICC become more serious about its digital banking agenda.
With Shen Rujun at the helm as chairman of CICC, the bank has strengthened its GBA game further recently, making it the winner of Asiamoney’s award for best securities house for the GBA in 2022.
The firm’s GBA strategy is three-pronged: internationalization through Hong Kong; digitalization; and localization.
CICC’s investment banking franchise, which is led by managing director and head of international IB Xu Jia in Hong Kong, has gone from strength to strength as it helps many Chinese companies list on the city’s bourse.
The bank worked on IPOs on China’s Science and Technology Innovation Board, such as the Rmb1.3 billion ($194 million) deal for Guangdong Xidi Microelectronics. CICC also helped SF Holdings raise about Rmb200 billion from the non-public issuance of A-shares in China.
During Asiamoney’s awards period, CICC was involved in 46 M&A deals in the GBA, worth a total of $51 billion.
In debt markets, CICC worked on both domestic and overseas bonds for 80 clients in the GBA including two important deals: the Shenzhen and Guangdong governments’ debut offshore renminbi (or dim sum) bonds in October 2021. Shenzhen raised Rmb5 billion, and Guangdong raised Rmb2.2 billion. These two were the first Chinese local governments to sell offshore bonds. CICC was one of the lead banks on both trades.
Guangdong’s deal was noteworthy because it listed its bond in Macau, part of the GBA. Shenzhen’s bonds trade on the Hong Kong exchange.
The rapid pace of growth in deals from GBA means that CICC has made Shenzhen one of its main centres, alongside Beijing and Shanghai, according to bankers at the firm.
CICC’s equities trading operation is solid. The team covers roughly 400 institutional investors in the Guangdong area, including private equity funds, companies and securities houses. It has about 100 people in Hong Kong and 40 in Shenzhen – all to cover the South China market.
CICC Hong Kong Asset Management Corporation is licensed by the local regulator and had over Rmb100 billion in assets by the end of 2021, with 46 people working in the GBA. It added 13 new employees to the team last year and plans to continue bolstering its franchise.