Wanda Commercial to Apply for A-Share Listing to Expand

Dalian Wanda Commercial Properties Co., controlled by Chinese billionaire Wang Jianlin, said it will submit an application in September to list A shares in China to raise cash for expansion and acquisitions.

The company is preparing documents for the China Securities Regulatory Commission, Dalian Wanda Group Co. Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Geffrey Liu said at a media briefing in Hong Kong on Thursday. It will maintain the fundraising target of 12 billion yuan ($1.9 billion) announced in July. Wanda has yet to determine whether the listing will be on the Shanghai or Shenzhen exchange, according to the July statement.

“The A-share listing plan will enhance our business development as we will have access in both offshore and onshore capital markets in Hong Kong and China,” Liu said.

Wanda’s shareholders approved the proposed A-share listing on Aug. 18, he said. The final time table depends on when the CSRC allows initial public offerings to resume.

Wanda Commercial, China’s largest commercial property owner by floor area, is hunting for cash to fund faster developments of plazas and malls across the nation following a rapid expansion in lower-tier cities. The company added five new Wanda Plazas in the first half, its flagship developments, bringing the total number to 112, it said in a Hong Kong stock exchange statement Wednesday.

The developer’s profit rose 117 percent in the first half to 2.3 billion yuan as it benefited from an increase in property leasing income from the five new shopping malls, according to the statement. It will “accelerate the expansion of properties held,” pursuing a larger market share, the company said.

Shares of Wanda Commercial traded in Hong Kong jumped 5.6 percent to HK$46.95 at 1:09 p.m. local time, compared with a 2.3 percent advance in the benchmark Hang Seng Index. They are down 2.3 percent since they debuted in December.

Wanda Group is also on an acquisition spree. It is buying World Triathlon Corp., the organizer of the Iron Man triathlons, for $650 million, it said at a separate briefing in Beijing on Thursday. Another “major acquisition” will follow in a month or two, it said.

— With assistance by Emma Dong, and Foster Wong

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