ChinaTravelNews - Ocean Link, an investment firm indirectly associated with the Trip.com Group, offered to take New York-listed 58.com private in a non-binding proposal.
China's largest online classifieds marketplace 58.com said on April 2 that it received a preliminary non-binding proposal from Ocean Link to acquire all of the company's outstanding ordinary shares for USD 27.5 in cash per Class A or Class B ordinary share.
Ocean Link plans to fund the consideration payable in the transaction primarily with equity capital and possibly debt capital.
The Board of 58.com said it plans to evaluate the proposed deal.
Ocean Link claims that it is the first private equity firm focused on the travel and tourism sector in China.
In 2016, the firm set up a strategic partnership with Trip.com Group (previously known as Ctrip), the largest online travel agency in China, and General Atlantic, a leading global growth equity firm. James Liang, co-founder and executive chairman of the Trip.com Group, is also a board member at Ocean Link.
Ocean Link has invested in Chinese travel site Mafengwo, high-end business lounges operator DragonPass and hotel management company LvYue. It also holds a stake in Tongcheng-Elong, a Hong Kong-listed online travel company invested by Trip.com Group and Tencent.