The high interest is only half good news for Club Med. If one party pays too much, there's worry it won't have necessary capital to invest in the brand.
Fosun International Ltd., controlled by Chinese billionaire Guo Guangchang, made another bid for French resort company Club Mediterranee SA that trumps Italian investor Andrea Bonomi, extending the stand-off between the two sides.
The offer of 24.60 euros a share, made along with partners, values Club Med at 939 million euros ($1.15 billion) including convertible bonds, the bidders said in a statement. Bonomi’s Global Resorts group offered 24 euros on Dec. 5, valuing the company at about 915 million euros.
French regulator Autorite des Marches Financiers had set today as the deadline for any bid rivaling that of Global Resorts. The Fosun offer is the Chinese company’s fifth attempt in 18 months to secure ownership of Club Med. Fosun and Axa Private Equity, now called Ardian, offered 17 euros a share in May last year and later raised the bid to 17.50 euros.
The takeover may end almost half a century of public listing for the Paris-based company, which started on the Mediterranean island of Mallorca in 1950 in a village of used military tents and has struggled to generate profits in recent years.
The rival bidders both plan to refocus the brand on emerging markets that are spurring global tourism even against a background of slowing economic growth, military conflicts and the Ebola outbreak in Africa.
Fosun, which envisages Chinese tourists would make up one-third of Club Med’s clientele should its takeover plan prevail, would own 62.6 percent of the vehicle executing the approach, with Cia de Seguros Fidelidade Mundial SA, a Portuguese insurance company Fosun controls, owning 20 percent, based on 50 percent of shareholders tendering their holdings.
Beijing UTour International Travel Service Co. would hold 8.7 percent, Ardian 5.8 percent and Club Med’s chief executive officer and chief financial officer a combined 2.9 percent.
Trading in Club Med shares had not started by 9.44 a.m. in Paris.
To contact the reporter on this story: Richard Weiss in Frankfurt at firstname.lastname@example.org. To contact the editors responsible for this story: Benedikt Kammel at email@example.com
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Photo Credit: Promotional image for Club Med's Val Thorens resort. Club Med
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