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Seaco sale on hold

The HNA Group has decided not to sell the Seaco container leasing business at the moment, Bloomberg has reported.

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The Seaco container leasing business is owned by Bohai Leasing, an HNA Group subsidiary. HNA has for months been in a precarious financial position, and has been selling off assets around the world to raise cash. Some of these assets include hotels and commercial property that were purchased by HNA at very high valuations, at or close to market peaks.


Last year it was rumoured that HNA was looking for over US$1 billion for Seaco, but a sale has not eventuated so far. Bloomberg is now reporting that the sale has been shelved after failure to reach agreement on the selling price.


There is still, however, enormous pressure on HNA to sell assets, even if it is at a loss. One of its group companies, CWT International Ltd, has been unable to pay loans and this week creditors moved to seize some of CWT’s assets in the US, China and Singapore.


Late last year HNA Group claimed to have its finances under control after selling some US$40 billion of assets over two years. HNA is still trying to move forward with asset sales valued at around US$20 billion, however, the most recent being Hong Kong Express Airways, which was sold for around US$600M to Cathay Pacific. Immediately after the sale the South China Morning Post in Hong Kong reported that this was just 22.5% of the US$2.8 billion HNA needs this year for bond and loan repayments, leading some commentators cited to caution that HNA could still go bankrupt.

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