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Chinese developer Oceanwide is moving out of NYC, Hawaii to focus on LA

(Bloomberg)-developer China Oceanwide Holdings Ltd. The company is trying to generate cash by selling properties in New York and Hawaii as it works to revive a sprawling Los Angeles project that has been frozen in the midst of construction for three years.

The Beijing-based company plans to sell assets that won’t generate immediate revenue — or have been seized by creditors — “and reserve resources to develop the LA project,” according to an annual filing in Hong Kong. Oceanwide has spent approximately $3.5 billion on US real estate development.

Oceanwide is one of the largest Chinese-based property investors, which has struggled overseas since the Beijing regime restricted international capital flows in 2018, before tightening credit policies last year to real estate firms in Mainland China. was in danger. At least a dozen developers, including China Evergrande Group, have faced default or delayed financial reporting as they grapple with massive debt.

“Amid the vague prospect of an economic recovery and tighter regulations on the real estate development industry, the group’s liquidity issues will inevitably prolong into 2022,” Oceanwide said in the filing.

Oceanwide’s three-tower downtown Los Angeles project is a mix of residential and hotel space near the area where the National Basketball Association’s Lakers and Clippers play. The construction work came to a halt in 2019 as contractors complained that they were not paid. Oceanwide reported a loss of $177.5 million on the project last year, in which it invested $1.19 billion, the filing shows.

Founded in 1985 by Lu Zhiqiang, Oceanwide started as a property developer and has grown into one of the largest conglomerates in China with investments in banking, insurance, energy, media and technology. Over the past decade, he joins a crowd of Chinese investors who have pumped in more than $235 billion in overseas acquisitions, ranging from Trophy Hotels to Hollywood film studios.

He reported a loss of $214.9 million at a site at 80 South St in Lower Manhattan in which he has invested $410 million. The property was put up for sale in October by real estate brokerage Colliers.

Oceanwide reported losses totaling $90.5 million in 2021 at development sites in Oahu, Hawaii, of which it invested $653.3 million. According to the filing, it reached a deal to sell one parcel this month for $92.9 million and a separate property in December for $23.3 million.

Oceanwide lost a San Francisco project it invested in $1.3 billion last year after it was seized by lenders.

© 2022 Bloomberg LP

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