Saturday, 15 July 2017

Another Chinese Acquisition

Grouse Mountain is a short 45 minute drive away from Vancouver
When I was a teenager I learned how to ski on Grouse Mountain. I was cautious at first, but after learning the moves I became more confident skiing down The Cut, one of the main trails. On the other hand my brother had no fear and zoomed down the hill.

In recent years Grouse Mountain became popular in the summer thanks to the Grouse Grind, a 2.9 kilometre (2,830 steps) nicknamed "Mother Nature's stairmaster" all the way up to the top. If you could do it in under an hour you were really fit. Hardcore visitors were called "grinders" and liked to boast their times.

The Grouse Grind is popular with fitness addicts
In any event in the last day or so it has been announced that Grouse Mountain will be sold to China Minsheng Investment Group, the largest privately owned investment manager in China.

The property has been for sale since September last year and it is believed the deal is worth CAD$200 million that will be finalized in the next few days.

Apparently there are potential areas the new owners could develop, such as a hotel and spa, a bike park and conference facilities, but these are all subject to regulatory approval.

In the meantime all staff have been kept and operations will continue as usual.

Grouse is a popular and close by mountain for skiing
China Minsheng Investment Group was started in 2014 by Premier Li Keqiang and this purchase is apparently its first in Canada. Other Chinese companies with a foothold in the city include Anbang Insurance, China Poly Group Corporation, Greenland Group and Ping-An Insurance, Wanda Group and Fosun.

Despite the possible changes in the coming years, one thing's for sure -- the Grouse Grind will not be touched -- it's on government land.

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