4 Times Anbang Has Bailed In 2016
The mysterious Anbang Insurance jumped onto the US real estate scene with its $2B trophy buy of the NYC Waldorf Astoria in 2015, following that up with its $6.5B takeover of Strategic Hotels this year.
Since then the company has been less than reliable. Here are a few times Anbang has flaked on deals so far this year.
No doubt the company's biggest and most famous change in plans, the Starwood merger saga started when Anbang one-upped Marriott's $12.2B bid for Starwood Hotels & Resorts with its own $13B offer. Not to be outdone, Marriott followed up with a shiny new $13.6B package, which Anbang again outbid. But just when the insurance giant looked poised to walk away with Marriott's prize, it walked away from the negotiating table, citing "market considerations."
InnVest REIT Buyout
Anbang started talks for InnVest in March—just after backing out of its bidding war for Starwood Hotels—with Lydia Chen spearheading the deal. After walking away from the purchase, Anbang pushed InnVest toward another buyer, Bluesky Hotels and Resorts, a Canada-based shell company backed by unnamed Hong Kong investors. Chen continued to negotiate the deal on behalf of Bluesky, although a spokesman for Anbang told the Wall Street Journal “speculation linking Anbang to Bluesky is incorrect. There is no connection between Anbang and Bluesky.”
Fidelity & Guaranty Life Buyout
Anbang withdrew its application to buy FGL at the end of May, giving no indication why it was pulling back from the big purchase, which was supposed to go through in Q2. The Chinese insurance firm says it plans to refile "in the near future."
Anbang Chair Wu Xiaohui canceled his speaking engagement at NAREIT's annual conference this week—which was being held on the firm's own property, the NYC Waldorf Astoria. All of Anbang's recent flakiness comes as the company is being investigated by China's insurance regulator for its massive overseas acquisitions.
No doubt, with Anbang's purchase of Strategic Hotels from Blackstone still in the works, the world's largest alternative asset manager is crossing its fingers Anbang doesn't decide to bail a fifth time this year.