Dalian Wanda buys Ironman
Mainland Chinese property and cinema giant Dalian Wanda Group said Thursday that it is buying the company that owns the Ironman triathlon brand and race series as it forecasts explosive demand in China for the sport.
Wanda is paying US$650 million for Tampa, Florida-based World Triathlon Corp., which it called “a jewel in the crown of world endurance sports,” the company said in a statement.
The deal to buy World Triathlon, which operates 250 events a year, “will bring a top international competition to China for the first time,” it said.
Triathlons, which combine swimming, biking and running, have grown in popularity and are now an Olympic event. More people in China are paying attention to fitness as their incomes rise, the company said. The acquisition adds to Wanda’s growing stable of sports businesses.