On Thursday afternoon, NetEase Cloud Music, a popular Chinese music streaming platform, passed its listing hearing with the Hong Kong Stock Exchange and will start offering shares soon. The firm’s co-sponsors are Merrill Lynch, CICC and Credit Suisse. The specific amount of financing has not been settled yet.
On July 26th, Hong Kong Economic Times reported that NetEase Cloud Music would pass its listing hearing as soon as this week, a development that failed to elicit any comment from the company.
According to its prospectus, by the end of 2020, the music streaming platform had bagged 60 million music copyrights, but the focus of a copyright dispute seems to be the scarce resources of Tencent Music, such as Jay Chou’s complete portfolio.
On Tuesday, domestic media outlet 36Kr reported that NetEase Cloud Music is stepping up negotiations with many record companies regarding non-exclusive copyright cooperation, which would allow them to launch Tencent Music’s exclusive songs that had been removed from the shelves as soon as possible. Well-known music copyright parties such as JVR Music, Bin-Music, Modern Sky and HIM International Music have all communicated with NetEase. If successful, users will be able to enjoy the works of Jay Chou, Mayday, Fish Leong, SHE and Jonathan Lee on the platform.
“We are willing to introduce more songs to provide users with a satisfying experience,” a spokesperson from NetEase Cloud Music said on Tuesday. “We will also actively fulfill our responsibilities to promote the spread of excellent music works and the sustained development of the industry.”
To reduce negative impacts caused by the lack of copyright, NetEase Cloud Music says it is trying its best to support independent musicians. According to its financial report, as of 2020, over 230,000 original musicians have registered on the platform and produced about one million music pieces.
Tencent Music, the biggest competitor of NetEase’s music platform, served more than 800 million monthly active users last year across its three branches: KuGou Music, QQ Music and Kowoo Music.
Since the beginning of this year, Chinese regulators have strengthened the supervision of the Internet platforms, causing Hong Kong IPOs to become a better choice for listing than further afield. In the first half of the year, Kuaishou, Jingdong Logistics, Baidu, Bilibili and Ctrip have all chosen to go public in Hong Kong.