Wanda Delays $1.5 Billion Private-Share Sale

  • Internet unit fundraising said to be delayed until next year
  • Group has been facing scrutiny from Chinese government

Dalian Wanda Group Co. delayed a 10-billion-yuan ($1.5 billion) share-sale plan for its internet unit amid mounting scrutiny from the Chinese government, a person familiar with the matter said.

The series A fundraising, an early round of investment, for closely held Wanda Internet Technology Group will be pushed back until at least early next year, the person said, asking not to be identified discussing private information. Billionaire Chairman Wang Jianlin said in January that the business would begin raising funds during the third quarter.

Wanda Internet declined to comment.

The delay is the latest setback for Wanda, which has been selling assets amid scrutiny from Chinese authorities, who are clamping down on capital outflows to protect the yuan from depreciating. In the past couple of months, the company agreed to sell most of Wanda’s hotels and theme-park assets for 63.75 billion yuan and scrapped plans to buy a plot of land in central London.

The unit’s Ffan business was founded in 2014 as a $3 billion joint venture with Tencent Holdings Ltd. and Baidu Inc. to compete with Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. in the so-called online-to-offline market, which combines brick-and-mortar shopping with technology. Though the founding partners exited last year, the business has since attracted units of China UnionPay Co. and Bank of China as investors.

— With assistance by Jing Yang De Morel

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