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[HONG KONG] Chinese conglomerate Fosun International is in talks with investment banks to list its tourism business to raise at least US$500 million, according to people familiar with the situation. Fosun Tourism & Culture Group, Fosun's tourism unit, includes resort operator Club Med, a Chinese joint venture with tour operator Thomas Cook Group and the luxury Atlantis Resort Hotel in Sanya, Hainan province.
The Shanghai-based parent is considering spinning off the unit as early as next year and is likely to pick Hong Kong as the listing venue, according to the people.
The company has not decided on the fundraising size yet but two of the people said the deal would raise at least US$500 million.
In the first six months of this year, Fosun's "Happiness Ecosystem", which comprises its tourism and leisure and consumer and lifestyle businesses, posted a profit of 516 million yuan (US$78 million) on revenues of 6.5 billion yuan, up 37 per cent and 12 per cent respectively from a year earlier, according to the parent's interim results.
Fosun did not immediately respond to a request for comment for the potential spin-off.
Fosun, co-founded by Chinese billionaire Guo Guangchang, is one of the China's most acquisitive overseas dealmakers.
In September, it listed Israeli subsidiary Sisram Medical in Hong Kong through a HK$977 million (US$125 million) IPO. Sisram is a producer of medical aesthetics devices.
Fosun shares closed at HK$15.78 this morning, giving the company a market capitalisation of HK$133 billion.