Financially stricken Anbang Insurance Group has put up its 35% stake in Chengdu Rural Commercial Bank for sale with at CNY16.8bn ($2.44bn), reported Reuters citing a filing to the Beijing Financial Asset Exchange.
Anbang is the biggest shareholder of the state-backed Chengdu Rural Commercial Bank. The lender reported a net profit of CNY4.4bn in 2017. The financial asset exchange will conduct an auction of Anbang’s stake in Chengdu Rural if there is more than one bidder.
This is the latest in a slew of asset sales undertaken by Anbang, once among China’s most aggressive overseas dealmakers, to shore up its balance sheet since the authorities took over control of the group in February and gave it a bailout loan in April.
Among previous divestments was the sale in September of Anbang’s 91.65% stake in Century Securities for CNY3.6bn.
Anbang signed more than $30bn of deals in recent years prior to the takeover. Anbang’s former Chairman Wu Xiaohui, who masterminded the overseas deal spree including the purchase of New York’s Waldorf Astoria hotel, was sentenced in May to 18 years of imprisonment for fraud and embezzlement.