Wanda Group Leaves Hong Kong, Gets in Copyright Dispute with Disney

May 31, 2016

By Myn

Dalian Wanda Group offered $4.4 billion to privatize its Hong Kong-listed unit Dalian Wanda Commercial Properties, which was 10% higher than its previous bid in March. This is the company’s latest effort to delist its commercial property unit in Hong Kong. The company also faced an intellectual property warning from Disney after the opening of its theme park Wanda City.

HK - Wanda screen may 31

Wanda Commercial is among the stocks gaining the most attention today from financial crowd. The Wanda screen shows current events about the company including buyout, delisting and a new event named “cash reserves.”

If the privatization deal succeeds, Dalian Wanda Group plans to relist Wanda Commercial in domestic market where it will have higher valuations. In late 2014, the group planned to list the commercial-property arm in China, but Beijing wanted to cool down the domestic property market at that time. Therefore, Wanda Group turned to Hong Kong stock exchange.

However, according to the analysts, Chinese government now focused on boosting the real economy and create more jobs, which was the reason for Wanda Group’s move to take it back to the domestic stock exchange. Declines in Hong Kong property market are also getting worse as the market is expected to fall another 19% according to Bloomberg news.

HK - Housing scr may 31

Besides the hottest event related to the Wanda Group’s offer bid, Wanda Commercial screen on Sentifi also filled with messages about the rivalry between Wanda and Disney. Last weekend, China’s second richest man Wang Jialin introduced Wanda City, the first among 15 planned theme parks in China. Wanda Group aims to compete directly with Disney as the world’s largest tourism operator.

HK - Wanda MSgWang Jialin publicly attacked Disney on China Central Television by saying that “Disney’s one tiger is no match for Wanda’s pack of wolves” in reference to the number of theme parks. The American theme park owner dismissed the comment as it was unworthy of a response.

However, Disney raised a warning about the infringement of intellectual property rights when performers showed up at the opening day of Wanda City dressing as Disney’s very own Captain America and Snow White. “We vigorously protect our intellectual property and take action to address infringement,” Disney said in a statement about IP protection.

In a response to China Daily, Wanda said that the non-Wanda characters were operated by individual stores in the Wanda mall and they did not represent the company.

About the competition between the giants, Ben Cavender, principal of China Market Research Group, said that Wanda had a competitive advantage in prices. However, in terms of management, Jennifer So, tourism analyst at China Securities International, thought that Wanda is not good at operating theme parks and it needs the right management team to compete against the America’s giant.

If you want to harness the wisdom and insights from the crowd to monitor your portfolio free of charge, please sign up for myMarkets.