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Asia Minute: The Chinese Company Behind Ko Olina’s Latest Deal

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The latest big investor in local commercial real estate is a Chinese company. Developer Jeff Stone says China Oceanwide Holdings paid 200-million dollars to buy two Ko Olina Resort beachfront parcels. The Star Advertiser first reported the deal—adding that the company plans to make a billion-dollar investment on the site. HPR’s Bill Dorman has more on the company in today’s Asia Minute.

The multi-billion dollar China Oceanwide Holdings Group is based in Beijing.  Bloomberg says its businesses range from finance and real estate to energy, media and commodities trading.  The founder and chairman is one of China’s wealthiest people—Lu Zhiqiang.  The Hurun Research Institute produces an annual list of Chinese billionaires….and it currently puts his net worth at 13-billion dollars—number eight in the country.  Forbes calls China Oceanwide Holdings “one of the largest non-government controlled conglomerates in China” with operations in Hong Kong, Australia, Indonesia and the United States.

Over the last several years, the company has been making substantial investments in US real estate.  In August it spent nearly 400-million dollars in New York City for a development site near Manhattan’s South Street Seaport.  Earlier this year the Wall Street Journal reported the China Oceanwide Holdings was “becoming one of the most aggressive property buyers in California.”  Those purchases include nearly 300-million dollars for a parcel south of downtown San Francisco where the company plans to develop a pair of office towers….and a slightly smaller deal for a hotel, retail and residential project near the Staples Center in Los Angeles.  More details about the company’s plans for its Ko Olina purchase are expected next year.

Bill Dorman has been the news director at Hawaiʻi Public Radio since 2011.
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