Chinese Government Seizes Control of Anbang, Insurer That Owns Waldorf Astoria

By Paul Riegler on 22 February 2018
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Waldorf Astoria Lobby

Waldorf Astoria Lobby

The Chinese government took control of Anbang Insurance Group, owner of New York’s Waldorf Astoria hotel, on Friday and will charge its founder, Wu Xiaohui, with economic crimes.

The China Insurance Regulatory Commission will take over Anbang for the period of one year and remove Wu from his position as chairman. Under Wu, the company went on a takeover spree, spending billions of dollars to acquire high-profile hotels and other properties.

“The takeover management team will take effective measures to keep the company operating as usual and ensure that the legitimate rights and interests of consumers are fully protected and lawfully safeguard the legitimate rights and interests of all stakeholders,” said the commission in a statement.

The move puts multiple hotels by Anbang including the Waldorf Astoria as well as the St. Francis hotel in San Francisco under the control of the Chinese government.

The commission said that Anbang would continue to operate as usual.

Anbang acquired the Waldorf Astoria in 2014 for $1.95 billion. The hotel closed in 2017 for a three-year renovation project that will see many of its guest rooms converted to private condominium apartments.

In early 2016, Anbang’s attempt to take over Starwood Hotels and Resorts prompted a bidding war between it and Marriott Hotels and Resorts.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)

Accura News

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