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China’s Bilibili Anime Streaming Service Eyes USA IPO

You know, this could be the start of something big.

Yesterday, Bloomberg Technology reported that Chinese streaming service Bilibili is eyeing an Initial Public Offering (IPO) on a United States stock exchange. According to unnamed sources “with knowledge of the matter,” Bilibili’s listing could launch as early as next year.

Bloomberg noted that such a debut “could raise at least $200 million.” That said, Bloomberg’s sources did note that the “size and timing of any offering could change.” Bloomberg reached out to Bilibili, who declined to comment on the matter.

Bilibili is China’s biggest anime streaming provider, dwarfing behemoths iQIYI and Tencent in the category. The platform offers both paid and ad-supported models, as is typical of the Chinese streaming market.

The platform grew immensely between January 2015 and July 2017, during which it added over 300 new anime titles. This includes simulcasts of current shows, including Mr. Osomatsu 2 and Himouto! Umaru-chan R. During the two-year period, Bilibili invested in over twenty anime projects, including Space Patrol Luluco and Akiba’s Trip: The Animation.

Last year, the platform picked up the Chinese digital rights to hit film Your Name..

Baidu-owned iQIYI is also looking into launching on the US stock exchanges, with a potential valuation of $8 billion at launch.

According to Bloomberg, share offerings in the United States by Chinese firms are rebounding after a drop-off in 2016. Four out of five companies that
raise over $100 million have seen shares rise after the IPO.

Sources: Bloomberg, Variety

About the author

Samantha Ferreira

Samantha Ferreira is Anime Herald’s founder and editor-in-chief. A Rhode Island native, Samantha has been an anime fan since 1992, and an active member of the anime press since 2002, when she began working as a reviewer for Anime Dream. She launched Anime Herald in 2010, and continues to oversee its operations to this day. Outside of journalism, Samantha actively studies the history of the North American anime fandom and industry, with a particular focus on the 2000s anime boom and bust. She’s a huge fan of all things Sakura Wars, and maintains series fansite Combat Revue Review when she has free time available. When not in the Anime Herald Discord, Samantha can typically be found on Bluesky.

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