Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : December 12th 2015 Contents A18
Guardian www.guardian.co.tt Saturday, December 12, 2015
BEIJING---One of China s top entrepreneurs, the chairman of the
conglomerate that owns Club Med and other businesses in Europe
and the United States, is missing, a news report said yesterday,
a possible sign that an anti-corruption campaign is widening
beyond state companies.
Fosun International employees were unable to contact Guo
Guangchang after midday Thursday, the magazine Caixin said on
It cited messages on social media that Guo was last seen with
police at an airport in Shanghai.
China is in the midst of a 3-year-old anti-graft crackdown led
by President Xi Jinping that has snared dozens of executives at
state-owned companies in oil and other industries.
A court cited Guo in August as being linked to a supermarket
chain chairman who was jailed for corruption.
A series of figures in China s securities industry have disappeared
or been detained since August after authorities launched an inves-
tigation following a plunge in Chinese share prices in June.
Fosun, China s biggest privately-owned conglomerate, and its
pharmaceutical unit suspended trading of their shares yesterday
in Hong Kong.
They cited the pending release of an announcement with "inside
Phone calls to Fosun s media and investor relations departments
weren t answered.
Guo, 48, is one of China s biggest investors abroad. Fosun, which
he co-founded in the 1990s, has businesses in real estate, steel,
mining and retailing.
The Financial Times dubbed him "China s Warren Buffett" for
following the legendary American investor s approach of using the
cash flow from insurance operations to buy other businesses.
Fosun won a bidding war this year to take over Club Mediterranee,
the French resort operator.
Last year, it paid 1 billion euros (US$1.1 billion) for Portugal s
biggest insurance company, Caixa Seguros.
In the United States, it owns Meadowbrook Insurance Group
Inc, 20 per cent of insurer Ironshore Inc and the 60-story office
tower at 1 Chase Manhattan Plaza in New York
Guo has a net worth of US$7.8 billion, according
to the Hurun Report, which follows China s wealthy.
He denied earlier he was the target of a graft
A court in Shanghai said in August he had "inap-
propriate connections" with the chairman of a
state-owned supermarket chain, Wang Zongnan,
who was sentenced to 18 years, according to Caixin.
The court ruled he misused 195 million yuan
(US$31 million) of Shanghai Lianhua Supermarket
Holdings Co s money to help two other companies
invest in real estate.
The court said Wang misused his position "to
seek benefits for Fosun Group," according to Caixin.
In exchange, the court said, Guo sold two villas
to Wang s parents at low prices.
Fosun denied any impropriety and said the villas
were sold at market prices. (AP)
Chemical and the DuPont Co
announced yesterday that they are merging
in a US$130 billion chemical industry
The merger would combine two companies
that sell agricultural products to millions of
farmers around the world, and make a variety
of chemicals for consumer and industrial
products ranging from electronics, automo-
biles, and household goods to building mate-
rials and safety equipment.
The two companies will form DowDuPont,
then separate into three independent pub-
licly-traded companies focused on agriculture,
material science and specialty products.
"Over the last decade our entire industry
has experienced tectonic shifts as an evolving
world presented complex challenges and
opportunities," said Dow chairman and CEO
in a statement.
nies have been
ing and shift
parts of their
businesses. DuPont said yesterday that current
conditions in the agriculture markets and
emerging markets will make sales growth
"challenging" in 2016.
As a result, the company is cutting ten per
cent of its global workforce, including employ-
ees and contractors, a move expected to cut
costs by US$700 million.
The Wall Street Journal first reported this
week that DuPont and Dow were planning
Analysts suggested that falling crop prices
may have added to momentum for a deal by
slowing growth in the agriculture sector, a
key business for both companies, leaving a
merger as an alternate path to growth.
"This merger makes so much strategic
sense," said Jonas Oxgaard, an analyst with
Sanford Bernstein, before the deal was offi-
"Both DuPont and Dow
have individual issues they re
grappling with. They re not
underperforming as compa-
nies, but there are things they
could do better."
Liveris will be named
executive chairman of the
combined company while
DuPont chairman and CEO
Edward Breen will be CEO.
The company will have dual
headquarters in Michigan and
Delaware where the two
companies are currently
The deal, which the com-
panies expect to close in the
second half of 2016, is sure
to be closely scrutinised by
Top China tycoon
Guo Guangchang, one of China's most prominent
business leaders, is missing. (CHINATOPIX VIA AP)
The two companies
separate into three
material science and
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