Last year on November 4th, or BT (before Trump), Dick Clark Prods was issued a one billion dollar buyout offer from the Dalian Wanda Group, which among many other things is the world’s largest cinema-chain owner/operator. Dick Clark Prods is world’s largest producer/proprietor of televised events.
The takeover announcement was regarded as a done deal of sorts at the time, but with Donald Trump in office, the transaction’s closure seems to take longer than previously expected.
According to industry insiders, the delay (almost standstill) is due to Donald Trump’s hard stance against China. More exactly, Trump’s America First ideology will make for greater scrutiny with regard to Chinese investments in the US economy, the likes of Alibaba and Wanda, the new species of Chinese mega-conglomerates.
Dalian Wanda Group is a multinational giant squid if it ever was one and it also makes for China’s biggest real estate company as it operates luxury hotels and the whole nine yards.
Wang Jianlin is the mastermind behind Dalian Wanda Group’s 45 billion dollars conglomerate which already bought Legendary Pictures Studio and AMC Theaters in the United States.
Now, Dalian Wanda’s CEO is setting up a fund for what is described by many analysts as a Hollywood takeover, i.e. the Chinese are setting up beaucop dollars for investing in all Hollywood’s big 6 studios: Disney, Columbia, Fox, Warner Bros, Universal and Paramount.
It’s obvious that the Chinese are not only buying out property in Canada and in the US like there’s no tomorrow, but they now have turned their eyes on Hollywood’s main studios, which are responsible for the bulk of our biggest movies and TV shows.
Dalian Wanda Group’s buying spree has caught the attention of the US Congress (both parties) who now worry about China’s increasing influence over America’s movie-business, which can be regarded as soft-power projection via corporate buyout.
According to analysts, the Chinese overseas investments were increased by fifty percent last year, with the United States being the largest recipient , setting a record 50 billion dollars of Chinese investment in 2016.
Hollywood insiders are still shocked by Wanda’s 1 billion offer for Dick Clark Prods, a company bought by Guggenheim Partners in 2012 for $370 mn, an already inflated price at the time. Among Dick Clark Prods most famous franchises are the Golden Globes, the American Music Awards and the Academy of Country Music Awards.
Even if sources claim that the Wanda acquisition is basically a done deal, given the current political climate, the takeover may prove more complicated than previously expected by both parties.