China Logistics Owners to Sell Control at $2 Billion Value


China Logistics Property Holdings Co.’s two biggest shareholders have kicked off a plan to sell their stakes in a move that could trigger a takeover offer of the logistics operator, according to a sales document and people familiar with the matter.

RRJ Capital and Chairman Li Shifa aim to sell their combined 50% stake in the Hong Kong-listed company, valuing it at about $2 billion, or a more than 20% premium to the latest price, said the people, asking not be identified as the matter is private. The first non-binding bid is due around mid-January, the people said.

The potential transaction will likely lead to a general offer for the entire company under Hong Kong’s takeover code. Some other institutional shareholders may also participate in the sale, according to the teaser document obtained by Bloomberg News. The latest plan comes after RRJ decided not to proceed with an earlier sales discussion with a potential buyer, said the people.

Shares of China Logistics rose 5.6% to close at HK$4.12 on Tuesday, after surging as much as 6.4%. Representatives at RRJ and China Logistics declined to comment.

Major industrial logistics asset disposals are rare in China, where land scarcity has been a key impediment as the government keeps close control over the resources of its top-tier cities. The sale of Shanghai-based China Logistics will trigger further consolidation in the highly fragmented industry in which GLP Pte is currently the biggest operator, followed by China Vanke Co.

South Korean conglomerate CJ Group is exploring a sale of its Chinese supply chain unit, which specializes in chemical and cold-storage transportation, for as much as $1 billion, people familiar said in October.

China’s mushrooming middle class and their spending on consumer goods have led to increased demand for modern storage and speedy distribution. The pandemic exposed a lack of storage in big cities, as consumers flocked online to buy everything from groceries to medical supplies during the lockdown.

The assets of China Logistics are mainly located in the Yangtze River Delta, with a total of nearly 5 million square meters of gross floor area of logistics facilities under management, according to the sales document. It serves clients including Inc., Pinduoduo Inc. and Unilever Plc.

RRJ, run by former Goldman Sachs Group Inc. partner Richard Ong, is the second-biggest shareholder of China Logistics. The firm is seeking to cash out its six-year investment from its second fund raised in 2013. Rivals ESR Cayman and JD Logistics are among the top five shareholders of the company.

UBS Group AG is an adviser to the sellers, said the people.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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