(Yicai Global) June 6 -- Domestic theme park leader and real estate developer Shenzhen Overseas Chinese Town will invest CNY2 billion (USD312.5 million) in Tongcheng Tourism Group, one of China's major online travel service companies. The parties will bring into play the synergistic effects of their offline resources and online big data in their cooperation.
The investment from the large-scale central enterprise OCT in Tongcheng Tourism Group will not only confer commercial complementarity but may also hasten Tongcheng Tourism Group's listing, and perhaps help it prepare for the withdrawal of early investors such as Wanda Group, an insider told Yicai Global.
"The investment of the central SOE will make Tongcheng stronger, and entertainment projects of OCT such as the theme parks around the world will also find a place for Tongcheng Tourism as well," said Zhao Huanyan, economist and chief information officer for Huamei Consulting.
"For OCT, this is also a diversified investment related to the upstream and downstream industry chains. After investing in Tongcheng Tourism, this traditional enterprise can also enhance its overall business position both online and offline at the same time," Zhao added.
The cooperation with OCT was intended to build a new future-oriented tourism eco-platform, giving full play to the cooperation and syncretism among various sectors, Tongcheng Tourism said.
"In fact, Tongcheng Tourism Group and its subsidiaries have always been striving for listing, and there have been a lot of rumors at the time, but there is no accurate news afterwards," explained Wei Changren, chief analyst with Jinlu Consulting. Current Tongcheng shareholders such as Wanda Group are mulling a pull-out. OCT is taking business away from existing shareholders by investing in Tongcheng Tourism, Wei said.
Editor: Ben Armour