Baidu-backed online lender CITIC aiBank has garnered approval from the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission (CBIRC) for a new share issuance and the acceptance of sizeable investment from the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPP Investments).
CBIRC announced on 23 November that it had given its approval to aiBank to issue up to 1.634 billion shares under its capital increase plan.
CITIC Bank will subscribe for 901 million shares, bringing its total to 3.701 billion shares, for 65.70% of equity in aiBank, while CPP Investment will subscribe for 466 million shares, bringing its holdings in aiBank to 8.27% of total equity.
CITIC aiBank was founded in 5 September 2017 and is China’s first independent legal person direct bank. The lender was originally a joint venture between China CITIC Bank and tech giant Baidu, who held 70% and 30% of equity respectively at the time of founding.