Chinese startup backed by Ant Financial Services Group, the finance affiliate of e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding, is planning an initial public offering in the US, according to The Wall Street Journal. Beijing Happy Times Technology Development Co., which lets university students pay for online purchases in installments through its popular Qufenqi loan product, has begun preliminary work with Citigroup Inc., China International Capital Corp., Credit Suisse Group AG and Morgan Stanley on an IPO that could happen as early as the first half of next year, the people said. The offering could raise between $500 million and $800 million, the people said. Happy Times was valued at 8.3 billion yuan ($1.21 billion) on July 31, according to a public filing from Guosheng Financial Holding Inc., an investor in the company.
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