Beijing-based Luckin Coffee has contacted at least three banks for its initial public offering in the United States, Reuters reported Thursday, citing people familiar with the matter.
Credit Suisse has gained formal mandate for the IPO, while Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley are also advising Luckin, the less than two-year-old startup that aims to exceed Starbucks, sources said.
Luckin, which is now valued at US$2.2 billion after its Series B round, seeks a valuation of about US$3 billion in this IPO, which is expected to take place in May or June, or the second half of the year in New York, rather than Hong Kong which requires a track record of three financial years.
Luckin, which features online ordering, cheap delivery, and heavy discounting, has already opened over 2,000 cafes and plans to open 2,500 new stores to outnumber Starbucks in China, which now has about 3,600 cafes in the country.
Luckin did not respond to Reuter‘s request for comment.
This is not the first time that IPO rumours have surfaced for the heavily indebted Luckin Coffee. The startup’s PR director denied such plans early this month.