The People’s Bank of China and three other Chinese regulators said on Monday that they have called in Jack Ma, founder of Ant, and other executives to ask questions ahead of the company. $ 37 billion for an IPOWith the start of trading shares on Thursday.

In a brief statement on Monday, the People’s Bank of China (PBoC), the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission, the Securities Regulatory Commission and the State Administration of Foreign Exchange said that they “conducted regulatory interviews with the de facto controller of Ant Jack Ma, Chairman Eric Jing, and Chairman. “.

The organizers did not provide further details, but the Chinese word used to describe the interview – Yuetan It generally refers to the wearing of clothing by the authorities.

When Ant decided to go ahead with its public offering this summer, two of the company’s top executives said they had received assurances from people at PBoC that organizational issues would not be an issue.

That was before Mister Ma gave a Speech last month In Shanghai he criticizes regulators in China and abroad while also criticizing the country’s bankers – sparking controversy just as Ant has priced the IPO.

“China has no systemic financial risk [problem]Chinese finance does not carry risks, Ma said. Rather, the risk stems from the lack of a system.

“Today banks still operate with a foreclosure mentality, and they need collateral and guarantees just like pawn shops …” Ma added, “China’s financial mentality is the most risky.

The Chinese regulatory crackdown on financial risks in recent years has forced Ant to change its business model several times. The final challenge facing its dominance is the central bank’s introduction of a digital currency that people familiar with the matter say is an attempt by the People’s Bank of China (PBoC) to level the playing field between banks, Ant and Tencent.

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“Supervision and regulation are two different issues,” said Mr. Ma. “Supervision is monitoring development and taking care of it, while organizing is managing when there is a problem. At the moment we are strong in organization but we lack the ability to supervise.”

A spokesperson for Ant said: “Today the controlling shareholder of Ant Group, the CEO and the CEO, attended a supervisory meeting with its key regulatory bodies. Ant Group will deeply implement the views of the meeting, and will continue to follow the guideline of “stable innovation, embrace stewardship, serve the real economy, openness for mutual benefit”, in order to continue to improve our universal service capabilities, and help develop the economy and people’s livelihood. ”

Ant’s initial public offering in Shanghai and Hong Kong is expected to be the largest in the world, after investors registered $ 37 billion in shares. Last Thursday, the company’s bankers increased the offer after its retail offerings exceeded the value of the shares being offered for sale by more than 870 times. The expanded deal put the company at $ 316 billion.

Co-coverage by Nian Liu and Kianer Liu