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Revealed: Wolves owners Fosun in £1.2bn profit as company now worth £56bn

Wolverhampton | News | Published:

Fosun, the Chinese conglomerate that owns Wolves, has revealed it made record profits of £1.2 billion over the last year.

The 28 per cent profits hike came on the back of a string of deals around the world as added almost a fifth to the value of its assets, which are now worth £56.8bn.

But growth has come at a cost as Fosun, one of China's biggest privately owned businesses, also has a bigger pile of debt – worth £14.7bn – as it borrowed more to build its finance, health and leisure operations.

Fosun paid previous owner Steve Morgan £30 million to buy Wolverhampton Wanderers last summer.

There's no mention of Wolves in the corporation's 2016 annual report, but that is more likely because the club forms such a tiny part of Fosun's global operations, which range from steel and mining to healthcare, insurance and holidays.

  • COMMENT: Fosun making profits but Wolves impact likely to be limited

It also has a sizeable stake in travel firm Thomas Cook as well as owning Cirque du Soleil and Club Med.

But football is clearly on the radar for Fosun's chairman and co-founder, Guo Guangchang.

Wolves have been able to spend £27m on players since the takeover, with no suggestion that money is a problem.

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Meanwhile Fosun is looking at a bid to buy top German club Borussia Dortmund. And Mr Guo, who has been seen at Molineux with Fosun's Wolves director Jeff Shi, has even started using football terminology in his annual reports.

Describing how Fosun was building its management team, he said: "To draw an analogy, I would say that there should be more than one player for each of the position in a football team, and those who ultimately can play in a match are certainly the best players who have proven their abilities by winning their positions through competition. Such individuals and teams are mature and trustworthy."

Meanwhile there has been a considerable shake-up at the top of Fosun.

Two of Mr Guo's colleagues, have unexpectedly quit, including the chief executive Liang Xinjun, who helped found the business in the 1990s.

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He has been replaced by another co-founder, Wang Qunbin, after stepping down for 'health reasons', the company said in a statement. Mr Wang has also been seen at Molineux – he was in the stands for the FA Cup fifth round clash against Chelsea.

Ding Guoqi, senior vice president and a board member, had stepped down "in order to spend more time with family".

In a public letter posted on Fosun's WeChat social media account Mr Guo said: "I'm very shocked. But Xinjun thought it over and insisted on leaving, so it was a joint decision."

The filing also said Ding Guoqi, senior vice president and a board member, had stepped down to devote more time to 'family commitments'.

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