China’s Richest Man Wang Hunts Hotel Management Companies in U.S.

China’s Richest Man Wang Hunts Hotel Management Companies

By Bloomberg News  Sep 10, 2013

Wang Jianlin, China’s richest man and owner of the country’s biggest commercial land developer, said he has hired two investment banks to buy hotel management companies, mostly in the U.S. He is also in talks with overseas movie theater chains following his $2.6 billion purchase of the second-largest U.S. cinema operator AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. last year, Wang said in an interview with Bloomberg News on the sidelines of the World Economic Forumheld in Dalian, where Wang started his business. He didn’t name the investment banks or targets.Wang’s closely held Dalian Wanda Group develops property and shopping malls and runs department stores, luxury hotels and movie theaters. Over two decades, he has built 72 shopping centers throughout China called “Wanda Plazas,” anchored by his company’s department stores, office buildings and cinemas.

Dalian Wanda’s revenue will exceed $100 billion by 2020 with least 20 percent of sales coming from outside of China, he said. Wang is accelerating acquisitions overseas as the real estate market in China is overheating.

China’s property market is “definitely” in a bubble, Wang said. At the same time, it is “controllable, not big,” Wang said.

The Dalian Wanda conglomerate is owned by Wang and his son Wang Sicong. The 58-year-old has a net worth of $13.7 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

AMC IPO

Wang said he plans to go forward with plans to sell shares in AMC overseas. Last month, AMC disclosed plans for a U.S. initial public offering, seeking $400 million. The chain may use proceeds to fuel expansion and repay debt, according a regulatory filing. The company had about $2.1 billion of long-term debt on June 30.

He acquired a stake in Sunseeker International Ltd., a U.K.-based maker of luxury yachts used in the James Bond movies, for $1.6 billion in June. Wang said he also plans to spend more than $1 billion to build a luxury residential complex along the banks of London’s Thames river.

Wang is the oldest of five brothers born to a military family in western China’s Sichuan province, near the border with Tibet. His father fought for Mao Zedong’s Red Army during the Long March campaign in the 1930s, and later against the Japanese in World War II.

Wang joined the People’s Liberation Army as a teenager and served for 16 years before he was honorably discharged as an officer. He later landed a job at an indebted residential developer affiliated with the Northern port city of Dalian, changed the company’s name to Dalian Wanda and became the general manager in 1992.

To contact Bloomberg News staff for this story: Michael Wei in Shanghai at mwei13@bloomberg.net; Liza Lin in Shanghai atllin15@bloomberg.net

About bambooinnovator
Kee Koon Boon (“KB”) is the co-founder and director of HERO Investment Management which provides specialized fund management and investment advisory services to the ARCHEA Asia HERO Innovators Fund (www.heroinnovator.com), the only Asian SMID-cap tech-focused fund in the industry. KB is an internationally featured investor rooted in the principles of value investing for over a decade as a fund manager and analyst in the Asian capital markets who started his career at a boutique hedge fund in Singapore where he was with the firm since 2002 and was also part of the core investment committee in significantly outperforming the index in the 10-year-plus-old flagship Asian fund. He was also the portfolio manager for Asia-Pacific equities at Korea’s largest mutual fund company. Prior to setting up the H.E.R.O. Innovators Fund, KB was the Chief Investment Officer & CEO of a Singapore Registered Fund Management Company (RFMC) where he is responsible for listed Asian equity investments. KB had taught accounting at the Singapore Management University (SMU) as a faculty member and also pioneered the 15-week course on Accounting Fraud in Asia as an official module at SMU. KB remains grateful and honored to be invited by Singapore’s financial regulator Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to present to their top management team about implementing a world’s first fact-based forward-looking fraud detection framework to bring about benefits for the capital markets in Singapore and for the public and investment community. KB also served the community in sharing his insights in writing articles about value investing and corporate governance in the media that include Business Times, Straits Times, Jakarta Post, Manual of Ideas, Investopedia, TedXWallStreet. He had also presented in top investment, banking and finance conferences in America, Italy, Sydney, Cape Town, HK, China. He has trained CEOs, entrepreneurs, CFOs, management executives in business strategy & business model innovation in Singapore, HK and China.

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