Most shortlisted bidders for JTBC Studios’ pre-initial public offering, including JKL Partners, SG Private Equity, Praxis Capital Partners and Texas Pacific Group, have participated in the final round of bidding, industry sources said.

Strategic investors have also been active, including Tencent Video – one of China’s top three over-the-top streaming platforms – which is said to have reviewed the investment and conducted due diligence on the company.

JTBC Studios, a South Korean content distribution company, started its fundraising process by visiting a small number of potential investors through a limited competitive bidding. Market insiders expected global private equity firms to be strong candidates in the early stages, but domestic private equity firms did better as competition heated up.

The company is reportedly seeking a valuation of over 1.2 trillion won ($1.05 billion), which has recently risen because a new contract is being signed soon.

Shortlisted bidders will propose a valuation along with their preferred amount of investment in the final round of bidding, and the seller is highly likely to select its preferred bidder based on their final offers. (Reporting by Ar-rum Rho and Ik-hwan Choi)