UPDATE 3-AIA to shut IPO book early on strong demand-sources

* AIA to close institutional book 48 hours early – sources

* CIC aims for $100-$200 mln stake in AIA – source

* AIA retail offer opened for subscription on Monday

* India’s biggest IPO gets off to a good start

* Singapore’s 2nd biggest IPO surges on debut
(Adds Coal India, demand, fresh comment)

By Denny Thomas and Kennix Chim

HONG KONG, Oct 18 (BestGrowthStock) – Heavy demand for AIA Group
Ltd’s up to $20.5 billion share sale in Hong Kong prompted
underwriters to shut the offer to funds two days ahead of
schedule, sources said on Monday.

The strong interest from traditional funds and high-profile
Chinese investors in the sale of the unit of American
International Group Inc (AIG.N: ) comes amid a flood of Asian
IPOs that have cemented the region’s dominance in initial
public offerings this year.

AIA’s books will now close on Tuesday, U.S. time, as the
underwriters and executives wrap up meetings with institutional
investors in Chicago, Boston and New York, three sources with
direct knowledge of the matter told Reuters.

China Investment Corp (Read more about U.S. companies investment into China) [CIC.UL], the $300 billion China
state sovereign wealth fund, and Chinese corporates such as
China Life Insurance Co (2628.HK: ), are among the investors
queuing for the offer, they added.

One source said that CIC was interested in buying up to
$200 million worth of shares in AIA. CIC could not be reached
for a comment. AIA declined to comment.
<^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^ For a poll on AIA IPO pricing [ID:nSGE69D0DH] For a story of AIA IPO fees [ID:nTOE69E01U] For BREAKINGVIEWS on AIA valuation [ID:nLDE6930KI] Insider clip on IPOs: http://link.reuters.com/dar67m Graphic on global IPOs http://link.reuters.com/kum57p Graphic on top Asia IPOs http://link.reuters.com/mep57p ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^>

GLOBAL FUNDS FLOW EAST

Globally investors seeking better yields and cashed-up
domestic institutions have piled on big Asian share deals this
year, seeking to tap the region’s resilient economic growth.

Robust foreign fund inflows have also fueled strong rally
in region’s stock markets, driving many to multi-year highs,
encouraging issuers from India to Malaysia to launch record
deals.

Coal India Ltd, the nation’s largest ever IPO, was
subscribed about a third on day one, and Global Logistic
Properties (GLPL.SI: ), Singapore’s second-biggest IPO surged as
much 12 percent on its debut, all pointing to hyper demand for
any Asia play.

“Strong growth prospects in the region has made many IPOs
in the region appealing. We cannot find anything like that such
as in the U.S. at the moment,” said Alex Wong, a director at
Ample Finance Group.

In the first three quarters of this year, Asian IPOs raised
$97 billion, according to data compiled by Thomson Reuters,
more than double the combined total from the United States,
Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

An IPO boom is good news for underwriters and banks in Asia
have earned about $2.3 billion in underwriting commissions,
data from Thomson Reuters/Freeman Consulting shows, compared
with $955 million earned last year.

State-run Coal India’s $3.5 billion expected to generate
strong demand. [ID:nSGE69H09R].

GLP, which owns industrial and logistic properties in
China and Japan, is the first listing of a firm majority-owned
by the Government of Singapore Investment Corp (GIC) [GIC.UL],
one of the world’s biggest sovereign wealth funds with assets
of more than $200 billion. [ID:nSGE69H00F]

VERY STRONG RESPONSE

AIA CEO Mark Tucker said on Sunday that the IPO has
generated an “incredibly enthusiastic response,” without
elaborating the size of the demand. [ID:nTOE69G00H]

AIG is likely to price the offer at HK$19.14 per share, a
Reuters poll showed last week, above the midpoint range of the
marketing range. AIA is on course to be the world’s
third-biggest IPO, if priced at the top end and if AIG
exercises the over-allotment and the upsize options.

News of the institutional demand came on the opening day of
AIA’s retail offering, where the public is able to register for
shares before the stock debuts.

There did not appear to be long lines outside local bank
branches in anticipation of the offering. A rush to branches
can provide an early indication of strong retail demand, as has
been the case with past Hong Kong mega-IPOs.

Online media in Hong Kong on Monday reported that banks are
offering record low interest rates for margin loans to invest
in the AIA IPO.

Among other Chinese institutions lining up for the AIA
offer are Ping An Insurance (2318.HK: ) and Taikang, another
Chinese life company, one source said on Monday.

The sources declined to be named because they were not
authorised to speak to the media.
(Additional reporting by Donny Kwok; Editing by Muralikumar
Anantharaman and Lincoln Feast)

UPDATE 3-AIA to shut IPO book early on strong demand-sources