As Messaging App WeChat Pushes Past 300M Users, Owner Tencent Sets Up Shop In Singapore To Spin It Off

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Tencent has had listed business entity in Singapore since May, although it’s denied rumors that it intends to list WeChat on the Singapore stock exchange (SGX).

A China Daily report on Tuesday quoted an unnamed source saying that the Hong Kong-listed Chinese social networking giant plans to list its WeChat product in Singapore, and that it had opened an office here to support that.

Update: Tencent’s appointed Singapore PR firm just sent us a note to say: “This market news is not true and we have no idea where this market rumor originates from.”

The company, however did recently open an office here, and appointed its founder, Pony Ma (Ma Huateng), as the director as recently as Aug 1 this year.

Sgentrepreneurs dug out the company’s listing with the regulator, the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority Singapore (Acra), and found that it was registered in May.

tencent singapore ma huateng

A search on Acra’s listing site reveals that Tencent has two entities listed under the same office address: one Tencent International Service, and another Tencent Social.

Tencent’s other top executives, including Zhang Zhidong and Charles St Leger Searle, are listed as directors on file.

The original China Daily report stated that Tencent’s interests in the SGX were to avoid regulatory issues involved with listing WeChat on the same exchange as its parent company.

WeChat has, at last count, about 195 million active users per month, and a base of 300 million registered users, making it one of the most popular messaging apps globally.