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To the list of unconsummated Sino-US takeovers, add LeEco’s $2bn deal for US TV maker Vizio.
The Chinese technology company said on Monday that it would not proceed with its previously announced deal to buy California-based Vizio “due to regulatory headwinds”.
Instead the two companies said in a statement that they will now “explore opportunities” to incorporate LeEco’s content into Vizio’s devices.
LeEco, which sells online video streaming services as well as phones, had originally announced plans to buy Vizio for $2bn last July as part of its efforts to ramp up its presence overseas.
However, doubts began to surface about the viability of the deal amid concerns over Vizio’s data collection practices – which ultimately resulted in a settlement with the US Federal Trade Commission in February.
The move by LeEco comes as Chinese companies face tighter US regulatory scrutiny on national security grounds especially in the wake of Donald Trump’s presidential victory in November.
China’s Fujian Grand Chip Investment for example dropped a €670m offer for Aixtron, the German chip equipment maker, after it failed to get the go-ahead from the US’s Committee on Foreign Investment. The US regulator also thwarted a Chinese consortium’s $3bn deal to buy a lighting business from Philips last year.
Meanwhile Euronet Worldwide, which is in a bidding war with China’s Ant Financial over money transfer group MoneyGram International, has argued that its offer will face less regulatory hurdles than its Chinese rival’s.
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