TMON mulls IPO on Kosdaq despite red ink

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TMON mulls IPO on Kosdaq despite red ink

E-commerce player TMON is considering listing on the Kosdaq, the tech-heavy secondary bourse, to raise money for further expansion.

The company has lost money for five years but a revised listing requirement allows promising companies to be listed even if they are in the red.

A source at TMON said listing is one of many options on the cards, and details have yet to be decided.

“We are looking into different ways to secure investment,” the source said.

“But we are at the discussion stage and nothing has been decided.”

Media reports said that the company is consulting with Samsung Securities on an initial public offering plan, but Samsung declined to comment.

Revenues of TMON grew fivefold from 32.7 billion won ($29.1 million) in 2011 to 195.9 billion won in 2015 but its operating loss widened due to heavy marketing costs. A 57.6 billion won operating loss in 2011 rose 146 percent to 141.9 billion won in 2015.

The e-commerce company obtained a $40 million investment from NHN Entertainment, Korea’s game developer, last year.

The partnership is aimed at creating synergies between the two companies across core business areas that include mobile shopping and payment and online transaction solutions, according to a statement released by the entertainment company.

Some media outlets said that Coupang, another major e-commerce operator, is also considering an initial public offering.

The company denied the reports.

“The reports that we are preparing for an IPO is not true,” a source at Coupang said. “We have no plan for a listing.”

The company made headlines in 2015 when SoftBank invested $1 billion in the mobile commerce provider, which it used to establish a same day delivery system.


BY PARK EUN-JEE [park.eunjee@joongang.co.kr]


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