Wolves owner Fosun denies claims after shares fall

The giant Chinese business group, which owns Wolves, has moved to scotch suggestions that it is in poor financial health.

Guo Guangchang the chairman of Fosun International
Guo Guangchang the chairman of Fosun International

Fosun International shares which had lost nearly a fifth of their value this month, since the announcement of the divestment of a core unit, recovered yesterday.

They were up from 4.6 to five Hong Kong dollars on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.

Fosun chairman and co-founder Guo Guangchang has said the business is to file a lawsuit against news organisation Bloomberg which had reported that Chinese securities regulators had asked some large lenders and state-owned companies to examine their business exposure to Fosun.

He denies that banking regulators had made such an instruction.

Fosun International’s shares had closed at their lowest point since December 2012 on Wednesday after losing 18 per cent since September 2, the day the group announced the partial divestment of a core Chinese pharmaceutical unit.

Fosun's business empire also includes Thomas Cook and French resort group Club Med.

It has been subject to increasing scrutiny from rating agencies and investors over its debt in recent months.

Fosun has downplayed the checks from the state-owned Assets Supervision and Administration Commission as “routine information collection work by the Beijing SASAC system, without any specificity”.

It said that reports are completely false that the China Banking and Insurance Regulatory Commission had asked commercial banks to check about their financial exposure on Fosun.

Gong Ping, executive president and chief finance officer of Fosun International, said: "Fosun's recent seemingly frequent reductions in shareholdings and divestments are a continuation of its financial strategy of balancing investment and divestment in the past few years. Fosun has been dynamically sorting and optimizing its asset portfolios. Such moves are not just for coping with the current market environment."

Fosun, which bought Wolves in 2016, saw revenue rise 17.7 per cent to £10.2 billion and profit up 35.5 per cent to £290 million for the first half of its financial year.

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