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Acquity Pushing Ahead With U.S. IPO After China Auto Postpones

Acquity Group Ltd., a Hong Kong-based digital marketing firm, will push ahead with its U.S. initial public offering, even as the second Chinese company to try and sell shares in New York this year postponed its IPO.

Acquity plans to raise as much as $55.6 million tomorrow selling American depositary receipts in the company in a price range of $8 to $10 apiece, according to an April 23 filing. Beijing-based China Auto Rental Holdings Inc. delayed its IPO late yesterday because of “the current capital market conditions” according to an e-mailed statement from the car rental company’s public relations firm.

“We are still on schedule,” Audrey Ling, Acquity’s investor relations manager, said by phone today in New York, after China Auto’s announcement. The IPO will be priced tomorrow and the shares will start trading on the New York Stock Exchange on April 27, she said.

Vipshop Holdings Ltd., the first Chinese company to go public in the U.S. this year, raised 39 percent less than planned in its March 23 IPO and is trading 17 percent below its offer price. IPOs by Chinese companies fell to 13 last year, from 38 in 2010, according to data compiled by Bloomberg, as short sellers including Muddy Waters LLC accused firms of misstating assets and the European debt crisis boosted concern over a global slowdown.

Acquity “has a better chance to complete its IPO because they are profitable,” Francis Gaskins, president of Marina Del Rey, California-based IPO desktop, which monitors IPO deals, said in an interview. “China Auto was profitable in the recent quarter and needs to show profits for several more quarters.”

Acquity had a net profit of $8.3 million in 2011, after incurring losses in the previous three years, according to its filing.

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