Johnson Ko sells ReOrient stake to Jack Ma

May 15, 2015 11:11
Alibaba's Jack Ma has acquired a huge stake in Hong Kong brokerage ReOrient Group in a HK$2.7 bln deal. Photo: AFP

Johnson Ko Chun-shun, a low-profile securities industry veteran in Hong Kong, has sold stake in financial services provider ReOrient Group Ltd. (00376.HK) to Alibaba Group chairman Jack Ma, in a deal worth about HK$2.7 billion.

The transaction comes after an earlier move by Ko to acquire 21 Holdings Ltd. (01003.HK) in partnership with Alibaba Pictures Group Ltd. (01060.HK) former chairman Dong Ping and Hong Kong Trade Development Council chairman Jack So, the Hong Kong Economic Journal noted.

21 Holdings was involved in property agency and related services, as well as securities trading and investments. 

ReOrient revealed earlier that four investors had joined Yunfeng Financial in a private placement of its shares at HK$2 apiece, representing a nearly 78 percent discount to the market price.

The financial company is believed to be controlled by Ma, who holds about 1.34 billion shares of ReOrient, according to the latest data disclosed at the Hong Kong Stock Exchange Thursday.

Apart from Alibaba Pictures and ReOrient, Ma also holds Alibaba Health Information Technology Ltd. (00241.HK).

21 Holding announced Wednesday that ReOrient, Ma, So and Dong, among others, have acquired about 75 percent of its enlarged share capital at 40 HK cents a share, representing an 80 percent discount.

Dong now controls 24 percent of 21 Holdings, while So and ReOrient hold 2 percent and 3 percent respectively.

The company will now change its name into Huanxi Media Group Ltd., and will be engaged in production, publishing and investments in movies and television programs.

The private placement raised a total of HK$680 million, of which about HK$520 million will be used for the production of six movies and HK$150 million for making TV programs. The rest will serve as working capital.

Translation by Vey Wong

[Chinese version中文版]

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Hong Kong Economic Journal