In the first major push into U.S. television for the Chinese power, Wanda will pay “approximately $1 billion” for the producer of the Golden Globes and other top awards shows.
On a warm October Sunday in Beverly Hills, Wang Jianlin, China’s richest man and the chairman of Dalian Wanda Group, made his way to a conference room adjacent to the bar at the Montage hotel. Joining Wang and his Beijing entourage were executives of Dick Clark Productions, the prolific production company behind awards shows including the Golden Globe Awards, as well as several members of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, which puts on the Globes each year.
The meet-and-greet, organized to introduce HFPA members and their counsel to the company that was in discussions to buy Dick Clark, is said to have been a cordial back-and-forth, with the journalists asking questions about Wanda’s plans for the company and Wang expressing his desire to maintain business as usual, with the current leadership of chairman Peter Guber, CEO Allen Shapiro and president Michael Mahan staying on board via long-term employment agreements, while owner Todd Boehly would remain an advisor to Wanda.
Now Wanda has finalized its purchase of Dick Clark, moving the Chinese company into the television business for the first time. The sale price is $1 billion, the companies announced Thursday in a joint press release.
“We are excited to partner with such an iconic company and look forward to supporting the management team as they continue to build the company and expand upon its enormous legacy,” Xiaoma Lu, CEO of Wanda Investment Company, said in a statement.