Friday, December 18, 2015
The Chinese billionaire who disappeared last week is now in the US
SHANGHAI — Fosun International's chairman, Guo Guangchang, has traveled to the United States, two company executives said Friday, suggesting that Chinese authorities were not restricting the movement of the billionaire.
Last Sunday, Fosun's president, Wang Qunbin, said Guo was helping the police with an investigation that mostly concerned his "personal affairs."
The investigation had sparked investor concern over Fosun, one of China's most aggressive global dealmakers with stakes in the French resort chain Club Med, Britain's Thomas Cook Group, and the iconic US building One Chase Manhattan Plaza.
Fosun posted a statement on its website on Friday saying Guo would attend a performance by the Fosun-backed circus group Cirque du Soleil in Canada on Monday, and before that he would be in New York visiting projects and meeting business partners.
Chinese authorities have launched a crackdown on corporate graft this year, especially in China's financial sector, hauling in officials and company executives for questioning and often limiting their movement in more serious cases.
On Monday, Guo attended a company meeting in Shanghai — his first public appearance since a report alleging he had gone missing sparked share suspensions and speculation that the firm was being drawn into Beijing's corruption crackdown.
Both the Fosun executives whom Reuters spoke with said Guo had flown to the US earlier this week.
The two executives declined to be identified because they were not authorized to speak to the media.
Photographs allegedly showing Guo at a New York restaurant had earlier circulated online. Reuters could not immediately verify the photographs.
Fosun officials did not immediately respond to Reuters requests for further comment by phone and email.