Mirae Asset Financial Group is seeking to purchase a group of 15 luxury hotels located in major cities in the United States, such as New York, San Francisco and Chicago. It is a mega deal estimated at more than US$5.5 billion (6.73 trillion won).
The Bloomberg reported on Aug. 13 that Mirae Asset Financial Group has emerged as the leading bidder for a portfolio of 15 U.S. luxury hotels being sold by troubled Chinese insurer Anbang Insurance Group.
The Mirae Asset consortium is currently working to arrange financing and reach an agreement on terms of a purchase, according to the report. If talks are successful, Mirae Asset aims to make a nonrefundable deposit by the end of the month.
However, Anbang Insurance hasn’t granted exclusivity to Mirae Asset, and at least one other suitor is still actively pursuing the assets. The hotel portfolio also attracted interest from suitors including Brookfield Asset Management Inc. and a consortium fronted by Richard Faber, a former lieutenant to the U.K.’s billionaire Barclay twins, Bloomberg News has reported.
A Mirae Asset official said, “The Mirae Asset consortium is planning to reach an agreement on purchase terms and will participate in the deal as a financial investor. We will hold additional talks on the specific composition of the consortium after being selected as the successful bidder.”
Anbang Insurance bought the 15 hotels owned by Strategic Hotels & Resorts Inc., from Blackstone Group Inc., the largest private equity fund in the world, in 2016. The properties include the JW Marriott Essex House in New York, the Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel and the Westin St. Francis in San Francisco, the Fairmont Hotel in Chicago and the Four Seasons in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
Anbang Insurance grew rapidly through the purchase of overseas companies and real estate assets, but it was embroiled in a controversy over outflow of national wealth. As a result, the Chinese government seized control of Anbang Insurance last year.
Mirae Asset has previously invested in U.S. hotels, including the five-star Fairmont San Francisco Hotel in 2015 and the Fairmont Orchid hotel on Hawaii in 2016.