Softbank’s investment in WeWork last month, which valued the co-working company at $42 billion, shocked many industry professionals and apparently among those still coming to grips with the deal are some of the leading investors in Softbank’s Vision Fund, according to an account in the Wall Street Journal today. Also getting some attention in the real estate world is a Korean commitment of $18 billion to Blackstone’s latest real estate fund and iconic New York toy retailer appears to be testing the market in Hong Kong. Read on for all these stories and more in our headline roundup.
Key investors in SoftBank Group Corp.’s giant tech fund have balked at a planned $16 billion investment in co-working startup WeWork Cos., leaving SoftBank Chief Executive Masayoshi Son to find an alternative as his ambitions hit up against the limits of his financial firepower.
Government-backed funds in Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi, according to people familiar with the matter, have told SoftBank executives they have concerns about SoftBank’s negotiations to buy a majority of money-losing WeWork, whose industrial-chic workspaces and short-term leases have made it one of the world’s hottest startups. Read more>>
Korea Investment & Securities Co. Ltd., one of the most aggressive cross-border institutional investors in South Korea, will commit 20 billion won ($18 million) to Blackstone Group’s latest global real estate fund in its first investment of short-term money raised via a promissory note in a blind-pool fund.
Blackstone is on track to raise above-target 20 trillion won in Blackstone Real Estate Partners IX, a medium-risk medium-return fund for a target IRR of over 14% per annum, according to investment banking sources on Dec. 18. It will employ value-add strategy for an investment period of five to six years and have a maturity of about 10 years. Read more>>
New York toy retailer FAO Schwarz has opened a private, invitation-only store in Hong Kong, designed by Studio X.
The 1,150 sqft FAO Schwarz Hong Kong store which quietly opened last month is a prototype retail concept for Asia where the company can test design elements and store features before it opens public stores in Mainland China and beyond. Read more>>
Hong Kong has over 1,500 hectares of brownfield sites but over two-thirds were not chosen by the government for development, according to an urban planning research group.
The Liber Research Community said in a new report that the number of brownfield sites – often farmland polluted by industrial activity – has almost doubled since 1993, but the government has undercounted the total area and exaggerated the difficulties of development. Read more>>
The authorities in Langfang, a city in China’s Hebei Province, have issued a ban on all Christmas displays on streets and in stores, according to a notice from city officials.
Christmas may be a Western holiday, but it has been co-opted in China as a marketing opportunity, with glittering trees towering in malls to draw in shoppers. Read more>>
Hong Kong’s property sector is a bit downbeat these days. Buyers certainly aren’t willing to pay high prices and developers have reined in their land acquisitions after shelling out record sums earlier in the year.
And there is good reason for that. There is no end in sight to the US-China trade war, the stock market is behaving erratically, and to cap it all, interest rates are on the rise. Read more>>