A Chinese court has named the only son of Dalian Wanda chairman Wang Jianlin – one of China’s richest men – as a debtor owing at least RMB150 million ($21.5 million), Chinese reports said Thursday.
The allegations against Wang Sicong were contained in a statement published on the official website of China’s supreme court. The younger Wang is currently the chairman of the private equity firm Prometheus Capital, which he set up with RMB500 million ($72 million) of his father’s money back in 2009. But the company’s equity was frozen by a Shanghai court last month, Reuters cited a corporate database as saying.
The younger Wang was given to making headlines in years past for his flashy spending habits, which he trumpeted on social media through posts showing the photo of a $400,000 karaoke bill or recounting the time he bought eight iPhones for his dog and dressed the pet in a pair of Apple watches. Like many of China’s wealthy scions, Wang was educated overseas, first in Singapore and then the U.K.
His father’s company, Dalian Wanda, also flew high with its eye-popping overseas acquisitions, including the purchase of the Atletico Madrid soccer club and Legendary Entertainment. But the conglomerate fell out of government favor in 2017 and has since been retrenching, including by selling off most of its tourism portfolio to Chinese developer Sunac in one of China’s largest property deals in history. Last year, its revenues declined for the third year in a row.
The elder Wang’s riches have been impacted accordingly. While he was China’s richest man on numerous lists back in 2016, he has now fallen to 14th place according to Forbes, down from fourth place last year.