You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Wanda Looking at IPO for Sports Division (Report)

China’s Dalian Wanda is reportedly preparing an initial public offering for a large portion of its sports portfolio. The move would help the property-to-entertainment giant reduce its debts and limit exposure to areas that have irked Chinese regulators.

According to sources quoted by Reuters, Wanda has approached investment banking groups, including China’s CITIC Securities, for a share listing in Hong Kong, though New York is also considered a possibility.

Contacted by Variety, Wanda declined to comment.

The businesses to be included in the sale would likely include Swiss-based sports rights and marketing firm Infront Sports & Media, which Wanda bought for $1.2 billion in 2015, and the World Triathlon Corp., organizer of Ironman triathlon endurance races. Wanda paid $650 million for WTC the same year.

Other sports operations in the package could include Wanda’s holdings in soccer and basketball leagues. But the IPO is unlikely to include Wanda’s 20% stake in Spanish soccer club Atletico Madrid.

In March 2016, Wanda became the first Chinese company to sign as a high-level partner of FIFA, the Swiss-based federation that organizes the World Cup and other tournaments. The deal gave Wanda sponsorship rights at the next four World Cups (2018, 2022, 2026 and 2030). That was widely seen as Wanda playing its part in a drive backed by Chinese President Xi Jinping to have China host the prestigious competition.

Since late 2016, however, Wanda has been out of favor with Chinese authorities, who regard the company as engaging in “irrational” overseas acquisitions. Since mid-2017 Wanda has been attempting to pare back its debts and undo the damage.

The financial industry sources cited by Reuters said that the U.K.-based Sunseeker yacht-building business, which Wanda acquired in 2013 for $495 million, is also up for sale, though not as part of the sports unit IPO. In recent months it has also been rumored that Wanda is seeking an IPO for the Europe-leading multiplex company it built from two other acquisitions, Odeon and UCI, and Nordic Cinema.

More Biz

  • Kodak Black Arrested at Border on

    Kodak Black Arrested at Border on Gun and Drug Charges

    Rapper Kodak Black and three other people were arrested after they allegedly attempted to cross the U.S.-Canada border with guns and marijuana, officials told NBC News on Thursday. The 21-year-old rapper missed concerts at the House of Blues in Boston on Wednesday night after he was stopped at the Lewiston-Queenston International Bridge near Buffalo hours [...]

  • Portugal. The Man to Perform at

    Portugal. The Man to Perform at ASCAP ‘I Create Music’ Expo

    Portugal. The Man will perform at the 2019 ASCAP “I Create Music” Expo, joining a line-up that includes Questlove, Wyclef Jean, Lee Ann Womack, Victoria Monét, “Shallow” co-writer Anthony Rossomando and Matthew Koma among other music creators. The Expo takes place May 2-4 at the Loews Hollywood Hotel in Los Angeles. The group, who were [...]

  • The Nashville, Tenn. downtown area and

    Nashville City Council Sides With Songwriters Against Streamers’ CRB Appeal

    Nashville city leaders have sided against the streaming services Amazon, Spotify, Google and SiriusXM/Pandora in the appeal of the Copyright Royalty Board’s decision that would give songwriters a pay raise. The Nashville Metro Council adopted the resolution as part of its consent agenda earlier this week, although the move is “purely symbolic” and the streamers [...]

  • Mueller Report Released: Networks Cut the

    Networks Curb Their Enthusiasm, William Barr Flexes as Mueller Report Goes Public

    The run-up to Attorney General William Barr’s news conference regarding the release of Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s report on the conduct of President Donald Trump suggested it was just one component part of a busy news day, something close to business as usual. And the broadcast — in which Barr stormily defended the President as [...]

  • Paradigm Names Marty Diamond Head of

    Paradigm Names Marty Diamond Head of Global Music

    Paradigm Talent Agency has named Marty Diamond the Head of Global Music, leading the agency’s representation artists worldwide, the company announced today. His personal client roster includes Ed Sheeran, Coldplay, Halsey, Janelle Monáe, Sigur Rós, Sara Bareilles, Liam Gallagher, Sia, Lorde, Alessia Cara, Bastille, Snow Patrol, Jess Glynne and Vance Joy. Diamond will head Paradigm’s [...]

  • View Conference Opens Registration for 2019

    2019 View Conference Opens Registration, Calls for Short Film Competition Entries

    Registration is now open for the 2019 edition of the View Conference in Turin, Italy. No speakers have been announced yet, but past conferences have featured some of the world’s top creative talents in visual effects, animation, gaming, virtual reality, augmented reality and mixed reality. Last year’s edition featured composer Hans Zimmer, Paramount Animation topper [...]

  • Kamala Harris Democratic candidate for US

    UCLA, Howard University Partner on Internship Program to Foster Diversity in Hollywood

    Increased focus on college students may be one way to pave a more diverse future in Hollywood. A new program from the UCLA Anderson School for Management’s Summer Institute at the Center for MEMES (Media, Entertainment & Sports) in partnership with Howard University gives students the opportunity to learn the ropes of the entertainment industry [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content