Tuesday, March 01, 2005

Shanda-Sina Deal: Chen Tianquiao's "lightning plan"

From The Guardian: China's player looks to the big game

"After Sina's 2003 attempt to buy Shanda, Chen first tried to turn the tables last October with a friendly takeover offer. The Sina board, led by the politically influential French-educated chief executive Wang Yan, reportedly refused to meet him.
Chen retaliated with a secret strategy that became known inside Shanda as the "lightning plan". According to the 21st Century business newspaper, Shanda registered four companies in the British Virgin islands which helped to make the purchases without setting off alarm bells. To minimise the risk of discovery, the bulk of the acquisitions were made on the Nasdaq stock exchange in New York on February 7 and 8 - either side of the Chinese new year, when Sina's top executives were on holiday."

"The Chinese government, which is used to state central planning, may also find it difficult to ignore the positive aspects of this capitalist raid on international markets. Shanda's move could pre-empt an often-predicted takeover of Sina by Yahoo, which would swallow it up into a larger American-owned empire.
Instead, a tie-up linking China's leading generators of internet games, advertising and messaging revenues could be a step towards the creation of a global player." Read more


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