Tencent-backed Recruitment App Boss Zhipin Files for US IPO

Kanzhun Limited, operator of mobile recruitment app Boss Zhipin, on Friday filed privately for an IPO with the US Securities and Exchange Commission. The firm is looking to list the app on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol “BZ,” according to its preliminary prospectus. No pricing terms were disclosed.

Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, UBS Investment Bank and China Renaissance are among the lead underwriters for the deal, the filings showed. Previous media reports said the Beijing-headquartered company is planning to raise between $300 million and $500 million.

Founded in 2014, Boss Zhipin aims to facilitate conversations between executives, high-level management and job seekers through instant messaging, and boasts “intelligent recommendations” and accurate matching results based on AI algorithms and data analysis.

According to its prospectus, Boss Zhipin’s monthly active users (MAU) reached 24.9 million in the first quarter of 2021, up 71.8% from a year ago, while paid enterprise customers reached 2.89 million as of March 2021. The platform includes both job seekers and enterprise users when calculating key metrics such as MAU and daily active users (DAU).

The company’s overall revenue increased by 94.7% from 998.7 million yuan in 2019 to 1.94 billion yuan ($298 million) in 2020. For the three months ended March, it earned 788.5 million ($120 million) in revenue, up 179% year-on-year.

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Boss Zhipin said it will direct the fresh funds towards technology infrastructure investment, further research and development, marketing activities to drive user growth and expansion and developing new product and services. The recruitment platform competes directly with US-listed 51.job and Zhaopin.

According to Yicai, the company has completed five rounds of financing so far, the most recent being in November 2019, with Tencent taking a 10% stake in the company.

The company now runs 18 business branches across China and entered the US market in April 2017, with physical offices in California and New York City.

In a letter to investors on Thursday, founder and chief executive of Kanzhun Technology Zhao Peng said Boss Zhipin has always aimed to be a human-centric application.

“Boss Zhiping is committed to using the power of technology to improve matches between employees and jobs. We firmly believe the recruitment industry should serve the people. Through people development and facilitation of human resources, we hope to create greater value for society,” Zhao said.

“The platform encourages recruiters and job applicants to connect via direct chat, rather than just sending resumes. We hope recruiters and managers can be involved in the recruitment process from day one to meet their demands directly,“ he said, adding that most employers on the platform are executives or mid-level managers at enterprises of all sizes.

China’s online recruitment market size reached 10.8 billion yuan in 2020, according to a report from research institute iiMedia Research. There was a significant increase of users turning to online recruitment platforms in March prompted by the pandemic, compared to the previous month.