By Sijia Jiang

 

HONG KONG (Reuters) - The president of Tencent Holdings <0700.HK>, Asia's most valuable listed company, has sold 1 million of his shares in the company at a premium of 5.4 percent to Wednesday's closing market price, according to a regulatory filing.

 

Martin Lau sold the shares in Tencent, whose stock more than doubled in value in 2017, at an average price of HK$434.36 ($55.35) apiece, reducing his stake to 0.48 percent from 0.49 percent, the stock exchange statement said.

 

The sale comes after Tencent's largest shareholder, Naspers Inc <NPNJn.J>, last week sold a 2 percent stake for $9.8 billion, the first time in 17 years it had reduced its stake.

 

Tencent lost more than $51 billion in market value in two days last week on news of Naspers' share sale and also management's warning of margin pressure. The plunge came despite the company reporting better-than-expected profits.

 

Its shares closed 4.63 percent lower at HK$412.2 on Wednesday, lagging a 2.5 percent drop in the benchmark Hang Seng Index <.HSI>.

The fall sent Tencent out of the club of companies valued at more than $500 billion, though with a market capitalisation of $499 billion, it is still the most valuable listed company in Asia and the fifth globally .

($1 = 7.8474 Hong Kong dollars)

(Reporting by Sijia Jiang; Editing by Mark Potter)