China’s second largest fixed line operator, China Netcom Group, has said it may use up to half of the USD1.5 billion it expects to raise from its initial IPO to expand its network infrastructure. The telco is hoping to entice investors to its IPO by promising to pay as much as 40% of its future profit in dividends. The shares are expected to start trading in New York on 16 November and in Hong Kong the following day. China Netcom is majority-owned by the Chinese Academy of Sciences, the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television, the Ministry of Railways and the Shanghai Municipal Government. 12% of the company’s shares were sold in February 2001 via a private equity placement which raised USD325 million and saw the ingress of a number of high-profile international investors, including News Corporation, Digital Ventures and Goldman Sachs Private Equity.