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Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Kuaishou, a Chinese short-video and livestreaming app, raised $5.4 billion in its IPO. Its shares then nearly tripled in Friday trading, pumping the company’s valuation to $159 billion.

Why it matters: It's the largest global IPO in over a year, and the largest global tech IPO since Uber in May 2019. Plus, it means Kuaishou is now valued just a TikTok short of rival ByteDance.

Return on investment: Kuaishou has raised over $4 billion from firms like Sequoia Capital China, DCM, Morningside VC, DST Global, Baidu, Alibaba, Tencent, Temasek, Boyu Capital and Shunwei Capital.

The bottom line: "Kuaishou's listing will be a test of appetite for Chinese technology firms just as Beijing steps up its scrutiny of the sector in areas from anti-monopoly to data protection. In November, the Chinese government introduced rules around live-streaming shopping, which could impact Kuaishou," CNBC's Arjun Kharpal writes.

Go deeper

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
Feb 4, 2021 - Economy & Business

Sana Biotechnology raises largest-ever IPO for preclinical biotech company

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Sana Biotechnology, a Seattle gene regulation startup led by several co-founders of Juno Therapeutics, raised $588 million in its IPO. The company priced 23.5 million shares at $25, for a fully diluted market value of around $4.9 billion.

Why it matters: It's the largest-ever IPO for a preclinical biotech company.

12 mins ago - World

COVID cases surge in South Africa in sign Omicron wave is coming

Recreated from Our World in Data; Chart: Axios Visuals

South Africa alerted the world to the Omicron variant. Now data out of South Africa may serve as a warning of what we're facing.

Driving the news: South Africa recorded 11,535 new cases Thursday with 22.4% of tests coming back positive — up from an average of about 300 new cases, with a 2% test positivity rate 10 days earlier. The country's top public health officials expect that exponential rise to continue as Omicron rapidly becomes the dominant variant.

BuzzFeed to go public, after shareholders approve SPAC deal

Photo by Charley Gallay/Getty Images for BuzzFeed

BuzzFeed is set to become publicly traded on Monday, after shareholders of a SPAC called 890 Fifth Avenue Partners voted to approve a previously-announced merger.

Yes, but: The vast majority of the money the SPAC raised in January was yanked, a signal that investors aren't very optimistic about BuzzFeed's future prospects.