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Momo Cancels Go-Private Deal To Focus On Live Short Video

Chinese mobile social networking firm Momo Inc. says an investor group including chairman and CEO Tang Yan has withdrawn its non-binding go private proposal dated June 23, 2015.

"During the privatization process, we have consistently maintained our focus on business operations and delivering growth to our investors," Tan Yan said in an announcement.

He said the management team have a great deal of confidence in the growth prospects of the company, which is supported by the strong momentum in revenues and profitability.

In the second quarter of 2016, Momo's live video service revenues reached US$57.9 million, more than tripling the amount in the first quarter of 2016.

Live video is much more than just a monetization opportunity. It is a brand new form of interaction enabled by technological transitions, and reshaping the way young people socialize and have fun via internet, the company says.

The company recently started to beta test Momo 7.0 and unveiled its short video service called Moments, enabling users to create and interact with short video stories in a fun and immersive way.

Momo says it also sees opportunities to target a new cohort of users and expand into new territories in social and the broader entertainment industry.

The investor group, included Matrix Partners China, Sequoia Capital China, submitted a proposal in June 2015 to acquire all shares not already owned by the group for US$18.90 in cash per American depositary share (ADS).

Shortly after the proposal, the transaction's completion appeared in question after the Chinese stock market crashed two months later.

A unit of Alibaba joined the investor consortium in April this year, though it wasn't able to reverse the deal from moving toward its ultimate cancellation.

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