A unit of China’s HNA Group has agreed a deal to buy Carlson Hotels, the owner of the Radisson hotel chain, the firms said in a joint statement late on Wednesday, continuing a spree of overseas deals by Chinese firms. HNA Tourism Group Co Ltd, a division of aviation and shipping conglomerate HNA Group Co Ltd, will buy 100 percent of Carlson Hotels Inc for an undisclosed sum, including its 51.3 percent majority stake in Rezidor Hotel Group AB.
Chinese firms have been snapping up hotels and hospitality brands around the world, from Fosun International Ltd’s purchase of France’s Club Mediterranee to Anbang Insurance buying up the famous Waldorf Astoria in New York.
HNA Tourism’s CEO Bai Haibo said the firm would build on the well-known Radisson brand to help “establish our presence in the U.S. market and expand our footprint in hospitality internationally.”
Carlson Hotels has 1,400 hotels in operation spread through 115 countries and territories, and employs around 90,000 people worldwide. After the deal HNA will have to decide whether to sell down its holding in Rezidor Hotel Group to below 30 percent or launch a mandatory public tender for the remaining 48.7 percent of the company, the firms said in the statement.
Chinese companies more widely have been splurging on foreign acquisitions to sidestep slowing domestic growth. The total value of Chinese outbound acquisitions topped $1 trillion for the first time last year. The Carlson deal, which is subject to regulatory approvals, is expected to close in the second half of 2016.