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Ant Financial raises $14 billion from overseas and domestic investors

Eric Jing, CEO, Zhejiang Ant Small and Micro Financial Services Group Co.

Ant Financial, the financial services affiliate of Alibaba Group, raised roughly $14 billion from overseas and domestic investors for its Series C, or third round, of equity financing, a Beijing-based spokesman for the firm confirmed.

An Ant Financial news release Friday said big overseas institutional investors participating in the U.S.-dollar tranche included Singapore sovereign wealth fund GIC, Singapore government investment company Temasek, 115.6 billion ringgit ($29 billion) Malaysian sovereign wealth fund Khazanah Nasional Berhad, C$356.1 billion ($274.4 billion) Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Warburg Pincus, Silver Lake and General Atlantic. Temasek had S$275 billion ($199) billion in assets as of June 30, 2017, while GIC is estimated at having more than $300 billion in assets.

In addition, the news release said funds and accounts managed by T. Rowe Price Associates (TROW), Carlyle Group, Janchor Partners, Discovery Capital Management, Baillie Gifford and Primavera Capital Group participated as well.

The spokesman declined to provide details regarding the investments made by each investor, the size of the dollar tranche vs. the size of the renminbi tranche or what the combined stake acquired for the $14 billion investment total amounted to. Bloomberg reported in May that Ant Financial was raising funds at a $150 billion valuation.

The unprecedented scale of Ant Financial's pre-listing fundraising is the latest evidence that the center of gravity in the world of investing continues to shift toward private markets and away from publicly traded markets.

The spokesman for Ant Financial — formally known as Ant Small and Micro Financial Services Group Co. Ltd. — said the strategic partnerships his company is establishing through the fundraising is more important than the headline fundraising figure.

Eric Jing, Ant Financial's executive chairman and CEO, said in the news release that "with the help of our partners, we are going to accelerate our strategy," focused on delivering financial services to what the release termed "unbanked and underbanked consumers and small enterprises globally."

The news release said the firm and its global partners served roughly 870 million annual active users globally as of March 31.

Bloomberg contributed to this story.