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华尔街读不懂的中国海外投资狂潮

更新时间:2016-4-16 8:41:02 来源:纽约时报中文网 作者:佚名

China’s Growing Ardor for Overseas Shopping
华尔街读不懂的中国海外投资狂潮

Nelson Peltz sat on the board of Legg Mason, the $3.7 billion asset management company, for five years while his hedge fund, Trian Partners, scooped up 10 percent of the company’s stock.

纳尔逊·佩尔茨(Nelson Peltz)在管理着37亿美元的资产管理公司美盛集团(Legg Mason)董事会里待了五年,同时他的对冲基金特里安合伙人(Trian Partners)拿到该公司10%的股份。

Mr. Peltz shook things up as he always does. He ousted the chief executive and got Legg to cut costs and return billions of dollars to shareholders. When it came time to exit the investment, Mr. Peltz sold his shares to the Shanda Group.

佩尔茨一如既往地进行了大刀阔斧的改革。他罢免了首席执行官,让美盛削减了成本,给股东带来了数十亿美元的汇报。到撤出投资时,佩尔茨把自己的股份卖给了盛大集团。

Wait, what? You heard right. Shanda is a Chinese investment company that started out as an interactive-gaming company but now “seeks global opportunities that offer business growth or unique breakthrough potential.” On Tuesday, it spent $340 million to buy Mr. Peltz’s stake in Legg, which got its start selling stocks out of a back office in the Baltimore Stock Exchange in 1899.

等等,什么?你没听错。盛大是中国的一家投资公司,靠互动游戏起家,但现在“寻求全球能带来业务增长或独特突破潜力的机会”。周二,该公司出资3.4亿美元收购了佩尔茨所持有的美盛股份。成立于1899年的美盛,最初是在巴尔的摩股票交易所(Baltimore Stock Exchange)的交易后台卖股票起家的。

The logic of this deal is hard to follow – not least because Shanda paid a premium to the market price for the Legg shares, something that almost nobody ever does for a passive minority stake. Yet such situations are hardly unique at a moment when Chinese companies and investors are going wild for assets of pretty much any color or stripe in the world’s developed economies.

这笔交易的逻辑有些难懂,尤其是因为盛大集团给美盛股份的开价高出了市场价。对于不会为购买者带来主动权的少数股份,几乎从来没人这么做过。但眼下中国公司和投资者正在狂热追逐全球发达经济体中几乎一切类型的资产,这类情形也算不上独特。

Indeed, the Chinese ardor for overseas shopping has become so fervent that there’s a new mantra making the rounds of Wall Street bankers who have an asset to sell anywhere in the world: “Who’s the Chinese buyer we’ve never heard of?”

实际上,中国海外收购的热情如此高涨,以至于但凡有待售资产的华尔街银行家都在流传一句新的口头禅:“我们从未听说过的这位中国买家是谁?”

The biggest advisory companies like Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs routinely fly China specialists across the ocean when they pitch companies for the mandate to help sell a business.

摩根士丹利(Morgan Stanley)和高盛(Goldman Sachs)等首屈一指的咨询公司隔三差五就要让其中国专家飞赴大洋彼岸,把委托它们协助出售的企业介绍给那里的公司。

The surge in Chinese buyers, many of them unknown in the West – sometimes even in Hong Kong — requires a new level of due diligence and heightened vigilance, from banks, lawyers and accountants. As the curious case of Anbang Insurance’s aborted – and inexplicable from the start – $14 billion bid for Starwood Hotels suggests, it’s harder for investment banks to really understand their Chinese clients’ motivations.

中国买家的激增,对银行、律师和会计师的尽职调查和警惕性提出了更高要求,很多买家在西方——有时候甚至是在香港——都不出名。正如安邦保险140亿美元收购喜达屋酒店(Starwood Hotels)的交易——从一开始就有些莫名其妙——离奇夭折一事所表明的那样,要了解中国客户的真正动机,对投行来说就更是困难了。

The China National Chemical Corporation’s $43 billion takeover of the agrochemicals giant Syngenta falls squarely into the first category. The state-owned enterprise was set up by the country’s former Ministry of Chemical Industry.

中国化工集团公司430亿美元收购农业化学品巨头先正达(Syngenta)的交易,完全符合第一类。国有企业中国化工集团公司由原化学工业部创办。

The Syngenta deal looks like it is intended to satisfy China’s goals to bolster food production in the world’s largest agricultural market. Syngenta’s chemicals and patent-protected seeds are a strategic asset for a nation that has a population of 1.4 billion. This deal, China’s biggest foreign acquisition, is a relatively logical pairing.

先正达这笔交易,看起来是想实现中国在全世界最大的农业市场推动食品生产的目标。对人口14亿的中国来说,先正达生产的化学品和受专利保护的种子是一种战略资产。作为中国规模最大的一笔海外收购案,这笔交易的买卖配对相对来说符合逻辑。

The same cannot be said of Shandong Ruyi’s surprise $1.2 billion purchase last month of SMCP, the operator of the second-tier European fashion chains Sandro, Maje and Claudie Pierlot. It’s hard to argue, as Shandong Ruyi does on its website, that “being involved in rabbit-hair spinning, textile & clothing, cotton textile, cotton printing and dyeing, knitting, fiber, jeans and real estate” has made it a “well-known textile-related pluralism group.” Still, kudos to the enterprising banker who alerted the firm to the willingness of the owner, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, to part with the French retailer.

但对上月山东如意出人意料地出资12亿美元收购SMCP一事,就不能这么说了。SMCP旗下拥有欧洲二线服装连锁品牌Sandro、Maje和Claudie Pierlot。山东如意在其网站上称,“兔毛纺纱、纺织制衣、棉纺、棉印染、针织、纤维、牛仔布和房地产领域的业务”让其成为了一家“著名的纺织相关多元化集团”,这让人很难争辩什么。但还是要钦佩那位富有进取心的银行家,他竟会把SMCP所有人科尔伯格-克拉维斯-罗伯茨(Kohlberg Kravis Roberts)出售这家法国零售商的意向告知该公司。

At least Shandong Ruyi has a website. In the auction of Dah Sing Financial’s insurance business, more than two dozen suitors showed up for the first round of bids, half of them from the mainland, and some so obscure that bankers involved in the process had never heard of them.

至少山东如意有自己的网站。在大新金融(Dah Sing Financial)的保险业务拍卖会上,二十多家有意向的公司发出了第一轮要约,一半来自中国大陆,其中一些太过籍籍无名,以至参与这个过程的银行业人士从未听说过它们。

That’s not unusual. When the private equity firm EQT was selling a German company that generates energy from waste matter, eight interested parties from the mainland showed up. And unlike banks or insurers interested in Dah Sing, they weren’t highly regulated entities. In the end, the business sold for 1.43 billion euros to Beijing Enterprises Holding, a conglomerate listed in Hong Kong with three business lines: gas, beer and sewage treatment.

这并不罕见。当私募股权公司殷拓(EQT)要出售一家利用废弃物发电的德国公司时,中国大陆有八位有意向的买家。而且不同于对大新感兴趣的银行或保险公司,它们并非高度受监管的实体。最后,那家公司被以14.3亿欧元的价格卖给了北京控股,一家香港上市公司,旗下有天然气、啤酒和污水处理三条业务线。

China’s lunge for foreign assets has hit $92 billion so far this year, according to Thomson Reuters, nearly reaching last year’s $103 billion record with eight and a half months to spare.

从汤森路透(Thomson Reuters)的数据来看,今年以来中国收购外国资产的资金已达920亿美元,接近去年创纪录的1030亿美元。而这一年还剩下八个半月。

At that pace, it won’t be long before Mandarin solidly displaces money as the language of opportunity on Wall Street.

照这个速度,普通话不久便会彻底取代金钱,成为华尔街最能带来机会的语言了。

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