Anbang Insurance sets sights on Canadian tower

Chinese firm is on a buying spree in Canada after purchasing office last year

Insurance News

By Paul Lucas

It seems that one of the giants of Chinese insurance has taken quite a liking to Canada.

Anbang Insurance, one of the biggest financial companies in China, has just made an offer to purchase an office and retail tower in Toronto, according to a Bloomberg report. If successful, this would follow on from its purchase of a 17-storey building in the city last year.

The report outlines that Anbang is “close to an agreement” for a 30-storey building at 777 Bay Street – with the value estimated to be in region of C$530 million. Currently, the building is owned by development and investment firm Canderel and pension fund manager OPTrust.

Should the deal come to fruition, it would mark the latest in a series of North American purchases for Anbang, which has been on something of a buying spree – its most notable recent acquisition was that of Strategic Hotels & Resorts Inc. for $6.5 billion, with the exception of the Hotel del Coronado in southern California.

Here in Canada, it purchased a building in Toronto for C$110 million last year before taking ownership of Vancouver’s Bentall Centre in a deal thought to value the property in the region of C$1 billion. The company was also linked to the C$2.1 billion deal from Bluesky Hotels & Resorts Inc. for InnVest Real Estate Investment Trust.

The latest building it has its eye on is about 914,500sq ft in size and includes an office tower with two retail floors. The building is currently 96% leased with the Government of Ontario reportedly occupying 68% of the property.

Related stories:
Hong Kong IPO to reveal Anbang owners
Why Chinese insurers are snapping up overseas businesses

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