A unit of HNA Group Co. outbid Hong Kong developers including Cheung Kong Property Holdings Ltd. with an HK$8.84 billion (US$1.1 billion) offer for government land in the former Kai Tak airport area.
It was the highest price tag in three-and-a-half years, Bloomberg reports.
The auction was the most hotly contested land tender this year as a rebound in home prices is under way.
It drew 20 bidders including Hong Kong’s Henderson Land Development Co. Ltd. and Wheelock Properties Ltd., and mainland buyers such as China Overseas Land & Investment and China Vanke Co., according to a Lands Department announcement.
The Kai Tak purchase works out to about HK$13,490 per square foot, according to Bloomberg calculations based on government data.
It’s the most that a piece of land has fetched in a government sale since March 2013 when Kerry Properties Ltd. paid HK$11.7 billion for a parcel in the Ho Man Tin district of Kowloon.
The deal is the latest overseas foray for HNA, which has been on a US$34 billion dealmaking spree over the past year.
The company, led by aviation tycoon Chen Feng, operates airlines, hotels and tourism businesses and is pursuing an aggressive expansion to capitalize on the surge in Chinese outbound traffic, expected to reach 200 million annually by 2020.
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