SINGAPORE, Feb 16 (Reuters) – Singapore is a global financial center. According to persons with knowledge of the subject and a Reuters investigation of Shein’s records, the Chinese online fast-fashion retailer is aggressively growing its Singapore headquarters after converting a Singapore entity into its de facto controlling company.
According to a document, the city-state has also welcomed Chris Xu, the company’s founder, and CEO, who has become a permanent resident of the city-state.
According to a Chinese corporate filing, Shein, which Xu founded in 2008 in Nanjing and has since developed into a worldwide fashion marketplace, deregistered its primary firm, Nanjing Top Plus Information Technology Co Ltd. Shein is a Chinese fashion marketplace founded by Xu in 2008.
What has happened thus far is consistent with what other sources have already said. According to Reuters, plans by Shein to list in New York this year have been rekindled, and Xu is considering changing his citizenship to avoid stricter Chinese regulations for offshore IPOs.
Road gets Business Pte, a Singapore-registered company that identifies Xu and three other individuals as its agents, was created in 2019 and has been the legal body in charge of Shein’s worldwide website since late 2021, according to Singapore government documents.
As part of the acquisition, Roadget now controls Guangzhou Shein International Import & Export Co Ltd and Shein’s trademarks, which were formerly owned by Hong Kong’s Zoetop Business Co, which has been embroiled in intellectual property issues with worldwide firms. Furthermore, Shein’s corporate profile page on LinkedIn indicates that the firm’s headquarters are in Singapore.
There were no sources for this piece since they were not authorized to talk to the media and did not want to be named.
Reuters’ questions about whether Shein had relocated its legal and administrative headquarters to Singapore said simply that the company had operations centers in essential markets, including China, Singapore, and the United States, but did not elaborate.
Shein, which had a market capitalization of over $50 billion in early 2021, manufactures garments in China for sale online in the United States, Europe, and Asia but does not sell in the country itself.
Xu’s Singapore permanent resident status was issued at an unknown time, and it is unclear if it was granted via the country’s global investor program. Before applying for Singapore citizenship, a person must have been a permanent resident for at least two years in Singapore.
Shein declined to comment on Xu’s permanent resident status in Singapore or whether or not he intends to apply for citizenship in the country. Xu is “a Chinese citizen with long-standing roots in China,” according to the statement, which also said that he was not accessible to address questions about the case.
According to Melissa Ow, executive vice president of the board, neither Shein nor Xu was willing to comment on whether the Singapore Economic Development Board had had negotiations with any of them.
HIRING IN SINGAPORE
According to two individuals familiar with the situation, Reuters reported Shein intends to treble the number of its Singapore staff to roughly 200 by the end of the year.
It is now recruiting for government relations associates and personnel in the areas of human resources, marketing, and information technology. As part of its expansion into the Southeast Asian market, Shein has announced that it will be expanding its Singapore office.
Although faced with tough competition, Shein has grown to become one of the world’s biggest fast fashion marketplaces by focusing on the social media-savvy “Gen Z” youth and using a vast number of influencers and discount coupons to attract customers.
The company’s website receives hundreds of millions of visits each month because of items like $10 gowns and $5 shirts. According to industry insiders, the corporation earned around 100 billion yuan ($15.7 billion) in sales last year. According to the company’s website, it has about 7,000 workers globally.
Because of Singapore’s high ethnic Chinese population, an Asian financial center, several firms see the city-state as a neutral base during the current trade war between China and the United States. Chinese technology behemoths such as ByteDance, the owner of the popular TikTok app, and Tencent Holdings (0700. HK) have established regional headquarters in Singapore in recent years.
Shein may list on the New York Stock Exchange. If this happens, it would be the first extensive stock offering by a Chinese firm in the United States since Chinese officials tightened their monitoring of such listings in July.
Chinese companies, especially those with significant outside markets, are drawn to the United States because of the enormous pool of possible financial investors available there.
($1 = 6.3574 Chinese yuan)