Telstra seeks IPO for SouFun

Robert Clark
Daily News

Telstra plans to list its Chinese online property portal SouFun in an IPO that could value the company at $1 billion.

Telstra, which paid $254 million for a 51% stake in the business in August 2006, said yesterday shareholders had agreed to prepare for a listing in 2010.

It did not say where the business would be listed.

SouFun Holdings, which owns the top-rated website, boosted profit 88% in the 2008 financial year and is expecting another 50% profit rise in 2009.

Given that online companies attract multiples of 20 times earnings, the company could achieve a valuation of $1 billion.

SouFun, managed by Telstra’s directories subsidiary Sensis, is one of seven mainland China investments owned by the Australian carrier.

In an executive reshuffle early this week Telstra named CSL boss Tarek Robbiati as new head of the international group, which is to be headquartered in Hong Kong.

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