Head of Chinese Firm Goes Missing with $153 Million
Beijing: Chinese police have launched a manhunt for the owner of a popular wealth management company who has gone missing with about $153 million of investors’ money.
Police in the eastern Chinese city of Hangzhou have started the search after the conglomerate Wangzhou Group, parent of Wangzhou Fortune, confirmed its chairman Yang Weiguo’s disappearance on Thursday. Investors in company have been reporting problems with the firm’s cash flow since April 18. More than 2 0,0 0 0 people have invested a total of about 2.2 billion yuan ($ 33.8 million) in the company, which has dozens of branches in major Chinese cities, Hangzhou police told state-run Xinhua on Sunday. Wangzhou Group also closed its shopping mall in Hangzhou after the scandal emerged.
To repay investors, the firm will retrieve about a billion yuan after receiving principal and interest payments from its lending.
It will try to cover the 1.2 billion yuan ($184 million) gap by selling properties, according to a statement from the company. Wangzhou Group has more than 200 subsidiaries in commerce, automobiles, health and wealth management, including Wangzhou Fortune.
It employs some 7,000 people in 70 cities.