NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Shares of Momo (MOMO - Get Report) are gaining 12.2% to $17.61 on heavy trading volume Tuesday after the Chinese Internet company received a "going private" offer.

Momo said it received a non-binding proposal letter from co-founder, Chairman and CEO Yan Tang, and investment firms Matrix Partners China II Hong Kong, Sequoia Capital China, and Huatai Ruilian Fund Management. Yang and the group offered to buy all shares they don't already own for $18.90 an American Depositary Share to take the company private.

The company formed a special committee of two independent, disinterested directors to consider the offer. The committee plans to retain legal and financial advisors to help evaluation the possible transaction.

About 2.6 million shares of Momo were traded by 10:03 a.m. Tuesday, above the company's average trading volume of about 1.2 million shares a day.

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