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In 2012, tech company Facebook held an initial public offering and ended up with $16 billion in sold shares. It was the largest tech IPO and third largest overall in United States history- and it’s nothing compared to the global history of IPOs. In this blog, we’ll take a look at some of the biggest IPOs in history.

Alibaba Group Holding Limited

Alibaba Group Holding Limited (NYSE: BABA) is a diversified e-commerce company based in China. It went public on September 18, 2014, and made $21.8 billion. Four days later, the underwriters exercised an option to sell even more shares, and that number rose to $25 billion, making it the largest IPO in history. 

Agricultural Bank of China

Mao Zedong founded the Agricultural Bank of China as a resource for rural farmers. It grew and grew, and on July 6, 2010, it had an IPO of $19.2 billion. It’s historic not just for its tremendous value but also for proving that the Chinese economy’s rapid growth wasn’t just a fluke. In fact, the top three global IPOs are all from China, which shows just how much the country has come to dominate the market.

Industrial and Commercial Bank of China

Another Chinese bank IPO, ICBC listed on the Shanghai Stock Exchange and Hong Kong Stock Exchange on October 20, 2006. It brought in almost $19.1 billion, and the following January, it exercised an overallotment option that rose that number to $21.9 billion.

General Motors

In 2009, General Motors filed for bankruptcy. On November 16, 2010, it went public on the New York Stock Exchange (GM) and rose from the ashes with $20.1 billion, making it the largest IPO in US history and the fourth largest in the history of the world. 


NTT DOCOMO, based out of Tokyo, is a telecommunications company that went public on October 22, 1998. It raised $18.4 in shares and was previously listed on the NYSE until April 13, 2018.

Visa Inc

Visa Inc (NYSE: V) is a debit and credit card company that issued its IPO on March 18, 2008, and raised $17.9 billion. Keep in mind that this was during the financial crisis, which makes it even more impressive. What made them so successful was that it had existed since 1977, leaving many investors eager to get a share of the company.