China’s Largest Port Builder Delays $3 Billion Shanghai Offering

China Communications Construction Co., the country’s biggest port builder, delayed plans to raise as much as $3 billion in a Shanghai share sale amid weakness in the stock market, said Chairman Zhou Jichang.

“Our original plan was to get listed in July or August this year, but now it is not the best time to issue new shares,” Zhou said in an interview yesterday in Shanghai. “Still, I hope we can get listed this year.”

The company, whose unit is helping build a new span of the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge, expects to double profit by 2015 from last year’s 9.9 billion yuan ($1.5 billion), Zhou said. Revenue will rise to 430 billion yuan by 2015, from 273 billion in 2010, he said.

The Shanghai Stock Exchange Composite is down more than 8 percent from its 2011 high in mid-April amid expectations that inflation and a slowdown in the Chinese economy would hinder profit growth. China stocks were cut to “underweight” from “neutral” by analysts at JPMorgan Chase & Co., which said in a report today that recent speculation that Chinese policy makers are ending their efforts to fight inflation is “premature.”

China Communications, which is already listed in Hong Kong, said in a December statement it would issue up to 3.5 billion new shares in Shanghai. Based on the stock’s closing price in Hong Kong yesterday, the sale may raise $3 billion.

Arrangers Hired

The Beijing-based company in April hired BOC International Holdings Ltd., Citic Securities Co., Guotai Junan Securities Co., Goldman Sachs Gaohua Securities Co. and Zhong De Securities Co. to manage the deal, Zhou said.

The company plans to use the proceeds to buy the nearly 39 percent of CRBC International Co. it doesn’t already own as well as to boost working capital and buy equipment, according to the December statement.

Zhou said China Communications Construction aims to expand to South America and Eastern Europe. It now has projects in Africa and Middle East. The company controls Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industry Co Ltd. which is building steel modules for the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge.

The company could win 650 billion yuan in new orders in 2015, up from 411 billion yuan in 2010, as it benefits from government spending on roads, railways and other infrastructure, Zhou said.

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