HNA Is Said to Be Probed Over Reporting of Deutsche Bank Stake

(Bloomberg) -- HNA Group Co., the Chinese conglomerate that’s the largest shareholder in Deutsche Bank AG, is being probed in Germany over whether it accurately reported its holdings when building the stake, according to two people briefed on the matter who asked for anonymity in discussing non-public information.

The probe by supervisor Bafin comes after the Swiss Takeover Board, in a separate case, found that HNA provided some false information and failed to disclose that company executives held the biggest stake in its takeover of Zurich-based Gategroup Holding AG. Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported the German probe earlier Monday.

“HNA’s voting rights communications regarding Deutsche Bank were and are correct,” a spokesman for HNA said in an emailed statement. Swiss law and German law are “fundamentally different” as regards the issue of voting rights, he said.

A spokeswoman for Bafin declined to comment.

HNA first bought shares in Deutsche Bank, Germany’s largest lender, in late 2016 and became the top investor after a capital increase in April, with a stake of 9.9 percent. Bafin previously dropped a probe into allegations that HNA was coordinating its investment with Qatar’s royal family, a person familiar with the matter said last month.

©2017 Bloomberg L.P.