Alibaba set to price shares as investors gear up for flotation (18/09/2014)

18 September 2014 Last updated at 07:14 GMT by BBC News

Chinese online giant Alibaba is expected to set the price of its shares later in what could be a record-breaking initial public offering (IPO).

Alibaba could raise between $22bn (£13.5bn) and $25bn when it lists its shares in New York.

The previous record IPO was set by Agricultural Bank of China’s $22.1bn listing in 2010.

Alibaba said in an official filing on Monday that it expected to price its shares at between $66 and $68 a share.

The increase suggested demand for the firm’s shares is high.

The listing could give Alibaba a total value of about $200bn, which would make it the third most valuable tech firm in the world after Google and Facebook.

The online retailer, which accounts for 80% of all online retail sales in China, handles more transactions than Amazon and eBay combined.

Alibaba acts an online marketplace for wholesalers, retailers, and small businesses, and handles e-payments and financial transactions. The company has also branched out into cloud computing and instant messaging.

The firm made a profit of almost $2bn in the three months to the end of June, with sales up by 46% year-on-year to $2.54bn.

Alibaba plans to use the proceeds from the listing to expand in the US and Europe, founder Jack Ma said on Monday.

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