Discussions between Lions Gate and Wanda are "at
an early stage and may not lead to a deal", Bloomberg reported,
citing an interview with Wanda's Chairman Wang Jianlin.
Wang's comments are the latest sign of the company's interest in
making further inroads into the U.S. film industry. It comes
three days after Wanda Cinema Line Co. Ltd, a movie theater
company controlled by Wang, received approval for a
share-offering in China in which it hopes to raise up to 2
A spokesman for Wanda could not be reached for comment. A Lions
Gate spokesman declined comment.
Wang, who Forbes magazine says is China's fourth-richest man,
said the owners of Lion Gate "have only been willing to sell a
minority stake", according to Bloomberg. He said he was also in
talks about investing in Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc.
In 2012, Wanda bought U.S. cinema chain AMC Entertainment
Holdings Inc for $2.6 billion, including about $2 billion in
assumed debt. The deal was the largest overseas acquisition by a
privately held Chinese firm and Wanda's first investment outside
In August, Wanda announced it had won the bid for a plot of land
in Beverly Hills and would spend $1.2 billion for a development
there as its "first important step into Hollywood".
Wang said his company was shifting its focus toward culture,
entertainment and e-commerce, according to the Bloomberg report.
Chinese real estate developer Dalian Wanda Commercial
Properties, a unit of the Dalian Wanda Group, has won approval
from Hong Kong's stock exchange for an initial public offering,
which could be worth up to $6 billion, according to a source
with direct knowledge of the matter.
In July, Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group signed a deal
with Lions Gate, the studio behind the "Hunger Games" films, to
launch a subscription streaming service in China.
(Reporting by Sui-Lee Wee in BEIJING and Lehar Maan in
BANGALORE; Editing by Pravin Char)
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