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Shanghai bourse suspends Syngenta IPO on missing financial info

Listing would have been world's largest this year, as Lenovo also pulls out

Syngenta, the Switzerland-based seeds and crop protection giant, was bought in 2017 for $43 billion by ChemChina, which was folded into Sinochem Holdings Corp. this year.   © Reuters

BEIJING (Reuters) -- Syngenta Group's planned $10 billion initial public offering in China has been suspended because the agrochemicals giant has not updated its application with its latest financial results, the Shanghai Stock Exchange said on Monday.

The Chinese-owned company's application to list on Shanghai's STAR Market was accepted at the start of July and was widely expected to be the world's largest flotation this year.

Syngenta did not respond to requests for comment.

The STAR market suspended 57 applications on Sept. 30, citing a lack of updated financial information.

Under bourse rules for vetting STAR Market listings, applicants must provide additional information if financial materials in applications are outdated.

Financial reports contained in a company's IPO prospectus are valid up to six months, according to China's securities regulator. Syngenta's application featured financial information up to March-end, meaning it was outdated after Sept. 30.

The Switzerland-based seeds and crop protection giant was bought in 2017 for $43 billion by ChemChina, which was folded into Sinochem Holdings Corp. this year.

Following the flotation, the producer of pesticides and seeds is likely to be valued at around $60 billion including debt, or $50 billion without, sources previously told Reuters.

ChemChina is also considering a secondary listing for Syngenta that could take place less than a year after its Shanghai debut, with exchanges in Zurich, London and New York among the options being examined, sources have said.

Lenovo Group, the world's biggest personal computer maker, withdrew its application last week for a 10 billion yuan ($1.55 billion) share listing on STAR, days after it had been accepted.

On Sunday it said it had done so because of the possibility of the validity of financial information in its prospectus lapsing during the application's vetting. It did not detail reasons why the information may no longer be valid.

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