The Wall Street Journal published an article today, suggesting that China’s wealthiest man, Wang Jianlin, may have his eye focussed on purchasing the owner of the Tour de France, the Amaury Sport Organization (ASO).
Sources say, Jianlin’s Dalian Wanda Group, which purchased the Ironman franchise for $650 million last year, has plans to heavily invest in Europa City near Paris, prompting the Chinese businessman’s interest to purchase the French Grand Tour.
To many, this scenario isn’t too far fetched, as Jianlin tried to purchase the RCS Media Group last December, which owns the Giro d’Italia.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the Dalian Wanda Group has been pushing its way into Europa City, with plans to build a multi-use retail and recreational project.
“Wanda is also interested in potentially buying Amaury Sport Organization, people familiar with Wanda’s plans said,” reported the Wall Street Journal. “They cautioned that the Tour de France deal isn’t as advanced and discussions remained at early stages.”
During a interview with VeloNews last year, Chinese journalist, Chen Xujie, said, “Wang wants these businesses to promote his real estate and tourism businesses,” “He bought Ironman, with it he gets people to the races and to his hotels, and maybe to buy a home. China has a huge growing middle class, with money for triathlons and tourism.”
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