Alibaba Group Holding is set to increase its stake in E-House to 22.6% from 8.3% through a HKD 2.4bn ($309mn) deal as it looks at expanding its online real estate sales platform into one of the country’s largest property agencies. With the deal, Alibaba will become the second largest shareholder of E-House after E-House’s chairman Zhou, who will own 22.8%. As a part of the deal, E-House will acquire 85% of Tmall Haofang by paying HKD 1.86bn ($240mn) in shares. Further, E-House will allot 132mn shares worth HKD 990mn ($128mn) to Alibaba’s Taobao China, and 33.33mn and 66.66mn shares worth ~HKD 1bn ($128.8mn) and ~HKD 500mn ($64.4mn) to its chairman Zhou Xin and Yunfeng Financial Group Limited respectively. The move will allow Alibaba, the world’s largest e-commerce platform to leverage their online marketplace for ESR’s real estate services. This comes as more developers such as Country Garden are shifting their property sales to online platforms. According to the company’s announcement, “The acquisition would provide E-House with the exclusive right to build and operate, with help from the Alibaba Group, a leading online real estate marketing and transaction service platform under the Tmall brand,”
E-House’s 7.625% 2022s and 7.6% 2023s were stable at 100.9 and 98.7 respectively. Alibaba’s 4% 2037s and 3.15% 2051s were up 0.72 and 0.59 to trade at 109.04 and 94.17 respectively.
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