Club Med to Come Under Chinese Management

Club Med Bali Photo:flickr.com/photos/norio-nakayama

Club Med Bali
Photo:flickr.com/photos/norio-nakayama

French resort giant Club Méditerranée, better known as Club Med, has officially come under Chinese management.

The 556.89 million euro deal was sealed last week, when the central French market authority, the Autorité des Marchés Financiers, approved the takeover at 17.5 euros per share—a markup from the original 17 euro offer made two months ago.

Club Med’s two biggest shareholders are now China’s Fosun International and France’s AXA Private Equity.

Fosun and AXA sought to quell fears that Club Med, one of France’s most iconic luxury brands, will come under Chinese control. The holiday firm will remain a French company, and the majority of its capital will stay under French control.

Club Med, like much of the European tourism industry, suffered during the onset of the global financial crisis. While it returned to profitability in 2011, it has started seeking to expand its operations beyond Europe. The deal with Fosun is a part of that goal.

While Fosun’s purchase no doubt signals a renewed focus from Club Med on operations in Asia, the resort chain is hardly a new presence on the continent. It has run facilities in Japan for more than 20 years, and also has operations in Thailand, Indonesia, and the Maldives.

Fosun started investing in Club Med in 2010. Even before moving to take the company over, Fosun was its largest shareholder, owning just under 10% of Club Med equities.

When the takeover was approved, Fosun and AXA’s combined share in Club Med sat at 34%. That figure now must pass 50% for the takeover to succeed.

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