by Staff Writers
Beijing (AFP) July 09, 2014
China's Wanda Group, controlled by the country's richest man Wang Jianlin, says it will invest $900 million in a five-star hotel and apartment complex in Chicago, as it acquires more assets in the US.
The project, to be located near the intersection of the Chicago River and Lake Michigan, will be the city's third tallest building with a height of 350 metres (1,148 feet), the company said in a statement.
It will be a mixed-use development consisting of a 240-room "super five-star" hotel, residential units and commercial space, and heralds greater expansion into the US, according to the statement posted Tuesday.
"The Chicago project is just the first step of Wanda's property investment in the United States," Wang said in the statement, adding the company would invest in five-star hotels in major US cities including New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco "within a year".
Wanda has made a series of big-ticket purchases of Western assets in recent years as it seeks to spread itself internationally.
Last month Spain's biggest bank Santander announced that it had sold a historic skyscraper in Madrid to a Wanda subsidiary for 265 million euros ($360 million).
The deal followed the Chinese conglomerate's acquisition last year of British yacht maker Sunseeker for 320 million pounds (now $548 million) and its $2.6 billion takeover in 2012 of US cinema chain AMC Entertainment.
It is also spending 700 million pounds on London's tallest residential towers.
Construction on the Chicago property project is expected to start this year and it is scheduled to open in 2018, Wanda said.
A Wanda arm listed in Hong Kong said in a stock exchange statement Tuesday that it and another Wanda subsidiary will have combined "capital commitments" of no more than HK$1.75 billion ($226 million) in the Chicago project.
Executives at Wanda were not immediately available to explain the discrepancy between the figures when contacted by AFP on Wednesday.
Wang, formerly a senior member of the ruling Communist Party, was ranked the richest man in China and 26th wealthiest in the world, business magazine Forbes reported in February, with his personal worth estimated at $14 billion.
Global Trade News
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.|